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‘Transfer ban can be good for Chelsea’ – Cole sees ‘opportunity’ for Lampard & young stars

2:58 PM WAT 08/08/2019
Frank Lampard Chelsea 2019-20
The former Blues star, who is now back at Stamford Bridge as a youth coach, believes there benefits to be found in not being able to sign new players

Joe Cole sees benefits to Chelsea’s two-window transfer ban, with the “opportunity” having presented itself for the Blues to try something different under new boss Frank Lampard.

A club legend returned to Stamford Bridge in a managerial capacity this summer fully aware that his hands would be tied in the recruitment market.

He has been able to turn Mateo Kovacic’s loan from Real Madrid into a permanent deal and welcome Christian Pulisic onto his books after seeing a deal for the United States international agreed in January.

There will be no more arrivals, though, in west London for another 12 months, with Lampard having to face a debut campaign as a Premier League boss with those already at his disposal.

He has already vowed to bolster his options by giving more opportunities to promising academy graduates, with the likes of Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount having been welcomed back from loan spells elsewhere.

Cole believes that could work in Chelsea’s favour, with there no need to spend on fresh faces if young stars can prove that they are ready for regular action on a senior stage.

The former Blues midfielder, who is back at the club as a youth team coach, told the Evening Standard: “It’s an opportunity.

“No one would have chosen to have a transfer ban, but what this has done is give us a moment in time and an opportunity to change the culture and the energy and how the club is perceived.

“The young players are excited — there’s an excitement in the club that I’ve not sensed before. 

“The club has been exceptional over the past 20 years, particularly since Roman Abramovich [bought the Blues in 2003], it’s been the most successful club in the country in terms of winning trophies.

“I think we need to recognise that, but if you’re going to catch Manchester City, you need more. More cohesion, [to be] more settled, everything around the club — and I think Frank’s the man to bring that.”

Cole is convinced that Lampard and Chelsea have picked the right time for a reunion, with an iconic figure having shown that he is ready for a Premier League challenge as a coach having passed countless tests at that level as a player.

“He knows the time is right,” Cole said.

“People say you can’t turn it down. You can turn it down, there’s always an option. He could have said no.

“He feels he’s ready and, having known Frank for many years, if he’s ready, he’s ready.

“It’ll be a success. In everything he’s done he’s been successful. I can’t see there being anyone better qualified to manage Chelsea at this time.”