Frank Lampard is under more pressure at Chelsea after a summer of big spending but “the days of Roman Abramovich being ruthless with managers are gone”, says Frank Sinclair.
That is expected to give a Blues legend the time he needs in which to deliver on expectations.
A familiar face was returned to Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2019 and charged with the task of steadying the ship in west London.
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Maurizio Sarri had walked away from English football, while Chelsea found themselves working under the constraints of a transfer embargo.
Lampard did deliver a top-four finish and Champions League qualification, along with an FA Cup final appearance, but is looking to kick on after being freed to splash the cash.
Many have suggested that a title challenge is required in order to prevent further change in the dugout, but Sinclair believes Abramovich will show patience with a boss he has backed.
The former Blues defender told Ladbrokes: “I wouldn’t necessarily say there’s massive pressure on Frank Lampard this season, but there’s an expectation there, that’s for sure.
“Even when Frank came in last season, there was an expectation to finish in the Champions League spots, even though he had obvious restraints and had to work with what he inherited as a squad.
“And fair play to him for finishing in the top four – not only that but he was always there or thereabouts last season as well.
“You could tell there was a standard of consistency throughout the season and obviously when you get the opportunity to sign some of the best players in the world then that expectation is going to be there once again.
“The next level from finishing in the Champions League is obviously winning the Premier League so I do think there’s going to be an expectation there that Chelsea push on and make a challenge of it along with Liverpool and Manchester City.
“There’s a lot of pressure that comes with spending an owner’s money – they expect to see value for that money, so Frank has to deliver.
“The days of Roman Abramovich being ruthless with managers are gone. It seems he’ll have a lot more patience with Frank, being a lot younger and inexperienced.
“He’s pretty much learning on the job and getting better and better with each game, so I’d be surprised if Roman was to get rid of him just for not winning the league or finishing in the top four.
“Outside of the football club of course there’s going to be pressure and speculation, but I’d be very surprised if Frank isn’t given an opportunity at Chelsea to better the squad, better performances and, most importantly, better himself as a manager.”
Chelsea have found much-needed consistency of late, while plugging alarming leaks at the back, and could move to within a point of the early Premier League leaders with victory over Sheffield United on Saturday.