Derby County owner Mel Morris has insisted that they will push on with their plan to build a future around Frank Lampard, as the club awaits a formal approach from Chelsea.

By 90Min
June 17, 2019

Derby County owner Mel Morris has insisted that they will push on with their plan to build a future around Frank Lampard, as the club awaits a formal approach from Chelsea.

With former Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri leaving to join Juventus, Lampard is the heavy favorite to take over. Derby has offered the 40-year-old a new contract as they are yet to have any formal contact with the Blues.

Derby remains eager to keep hold of Lampard, and now Morris (via Sky Sports' Jim White) has added that their stance on the situation has not changed.

“There’s no change in the situation at present, except for the fact that Chelsea no longer have a manager," Morris said.

“We have made it clear to everyone, but most importantly to Frank, that we want him and to retain his services for the long-term. If Chelsea want to hire Frank, then it is in their gift to make an offer in pursuit of that.

“In the meantime, we will continue to put our best foot forward to continue with our plans for the coming season, to work with Frank for him to know how much he is wanted by everyone associated with the club.”

Morris' statement comes after The Times published a report claiming that Chelsea will now accelerate their plans to appoint Lampard, after confirmation that Sarri was heading back to Italy.

Chelsea's primary motives are thought to include bringing a feel-good factor back to the club, as well as general improving the atmosphere at Stamford Bridge. The anticipated appointment of Petr Cech in an advisory role would complement this theory, and signify a change in approach in west London.

Lampard's first season credentials with Derby are there for all to see, having guided the Rams to the Championship play-off final while playing an eye-catching philosophy as well as reducing the club's wage bill.

These qualities have also attracted Chelsea, who is eager to bring back one of its most iconic players to help it through its two-window transfer ban.

It is thought that Derby could demand around £4m in compensation from the Blues, who would likely have no problem meeting Derby's demands after negotiating their own compensation from Sarri's departure to Juventus.

An approach from Chelsea is expected in the immediate future, although Morris's recent words suggest Derby is not prepared to let Lampard go easily.

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