Chelsea legend Frank Lampard has distanced himself from the ongoing speculation he could leave current club Derby County and step into the Stamford Bridge hot seat in the near future if under pressure manager Maurizio Sarri is shown the door.

Sarri has endured a challenging first season at Chelsea after being appointed last July and reports continue to suggest he may not last beyond the end of the campaign.


Having impressed in his maiden managerial role at Derby, Lampard has been an automatic name on lips as speculation surrounding Sarri's future mounts, but the 40-year-old has pledged himself to the Rams and insists that gossip about his future won't be a distraction.

Chelsea's all-time record goalscorer attended a Derby fan forum on Wednesday night. He acknowledged that such gossip is the norm, but made his feelings on the subject clear.

"Having played for Chelsea for 13 years, and the link I have with them will go on forever, it possibly means if Chelsea have their moments, which we all know they have had there, then I am an easy link," he is quoted as saying by the Derby Telegraph.

"So was Zidane before he took the Real Madrid job," the retired midfielder added.


Lampard said the rumours do not affect him "...because I have a three-year contract here. I am planning for pre-season, I am planning recruitment in the summer, and planning before that getting promoted, if we can. It is bits of rumour here and there, it affects nothing."

Lampard's Derby have fallen out of the Championship playoff places in recent weeks after a slump in form that has seen the team win only one of their last five league fixtures.

The Rams remain firmly in contention, though, one point behind sixth place Aston Villa and two points behind fifth place Middlesbrough, even possessing a game in hand on the former.