chaos at Goodison ‘We all have a point to prove at Everton’ – says new Blues boss Frank Lampard
Frank Lampard says he has a point to prove as Everton manager, a year after having been sacked by Chelsea, but did not give any consideration to the apparent chaos at Goodison Park before agreeing to take over.
The former England international also spoke glowingly about how he wanted Everton to play and evoked memories of Howard Kendall’s great team of the 1980s. In a reminder of David Moyes, Everton’s last successful manager, Lampard even twice referred to them as “the people’s club”.
Having signed Dele Alli and, Donny van de Beek on loan on transfer deadline day, Lampard was asked whether, like those two players, he has to make his mark again in the Premier League as a manager.
“Possibly. It’s the world we live in. I guess if you decide to be the manager of a football club, particularly in the Premier League, you are not going to cruise through your career without having points to prove at various different times,” he said.
“Even the most successful, have that, so I have got no issue with that. As a player, I found I had a point to prove at various different times; sometimes it brings the best out of you, and I hope it does with me.”
Lampard is enthused about the Everton job, even though he will be the seventh permanent manager employed by owner Farhad Moshiri in under seven years. So, why does the 43-year-old think it will be different for him?
“I don’t sit here craving time in terms of a two- or three-year vision. I know it is very nice to talk about the (new) stadium and where we want to be in the next few years, but what I have learned being in football and being at Chelsea is that I understand that you just need to get your head down and work.
“I am at the start of something now and I certainly haven’t asked for any assurances to that point.”
Lampard has been harshly criticised as a relatively lucky rookie manager to first be given opportunities at Derby County and Chelsea and now Everton, but his experience at those clubs – and as a player for Chelsea where he worked under nine managers in 13 years – will, he believes, stand him in good stead.
Nevertheless. Everton appear to be lacking in direction and leadership, with £600 million spent in the transfer market without any progress, an owner seemingly unclear as to what he wants, no director of football and an eclectic list of managers having made it onto the shortlist before Lampard was hired.
First they wanted Roberto Martinez, then Vitor Pereira appeared favourite before Lampard beat him and caretaker Duncan Ferguson in the final round of interviews last Friday.
“It’s not my job to analyse things that happened before me too much, I clearly don’t know the circumstances, I always like to take on face value,” Lampard said. “I have found an owner, a chairman (Bill Kenwright) and a board that, from my first conversation, the one thing that was clear was that they want to find the best way to take this club forward. They are very united. I know there have been some difficult times but it is not my job to look over those. I only want to look at the future with Everton.|”
Lampard has acted quickly with the signings of Alli and Van de Beek, who both spoke of him being a factor in their moves.
“Sometimes it’s good to get a player who has a point to prove in a certain way because they are coming here with a good hunger to come and show themselves,” Lampard said.
Helping Lampard do that will be his former team-mate Ashley Cole who, has left Chelsea’s coaching staff to become Everton’s first-team coach.
The first game is tomorrow’s FA Cup tie at home to Brentford – when Everton will be without the injured Dominic Calvert-Lewin, although it sounds like he is being held back for Tuesday’s crucial league game away to relegation rivals Newcastle United.
“The table doesn’t lie,” Lampard said. “There is a bit of an issue with confidence.” He will need to restore that quickly if things are to improve at Everton.
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