In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, John Terry gives Frank Lampard a ringing endorsement to become the new head coach of Chelsea, Derby owner Mel Morris insists his good relationship with Lampard will not be affected if he decides to leave the Rams and a report from Italy suggests the Blues are close to agreeing a permanent deal for Mateo Kovacic.
These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.
Terry gives Lampard strong backing
In an interview with the Daily Mail, former Chelsea captain John Terry has said there is ‘no one better equipped’ than Frank Lampard to become Chelsea’s head coach at this time.
The pair played together at Stamford Bridge for more than a decade and Terry feels the former midfielder is well suited to meeting the challenges facing the Blues in the upcoming season if he agrees to take the job.
‘After the season he has had with Derby and with Chelsea's transfer ban in place, there is no one better equipped than Frank to succeed at Chelsea. It is perfect timing for him and the club,' said Terry, who is now assistant manager at Aston Villa.
'He would welcome that responsibility to make Chelsea more competitive and provide the stability the club has probably been lacking.
'He has the tactical knowledge, enthusiasm and will have the backing of the players and fans to prove what he can do.'
Terry also believes Lampard and his current assistant coach at Derby, Jody Morris, will have a positive impact on bringing through young players if they return to Chelsea.
'You could see by the improvements made by Mason Mount at Derby last season that Frank will have an impact on young players and improve them,' he added.
'For some time, perhaps only myself and Ruben Loftus-Cheek had come through the academy to become regulars and that has probably left many young players questioning their future. Callum Hudson-Odoi will be assured he has a big role to play at Chelsea.
'Having Frank in charge and the transfer ban will give young players throughout the academy belief that there is a genuine pathway into Chelsea's first team.
'Frank and Jody have tremendous knowledge of the youth set-up. I guarantee they will watch as many Under-23 and Under-18 matches at Chelsea as possible and open potential opportunities for the academy players. In fact I think it will be an exciting time to see what can happen.’
Derby owner won’t hold grudges if Lampard goes
Derby owner Mel Morris has told TalkSport he will continue to maintain a good relationship with Frank Lampard and Chelsea if the Blues legend decides to leave the Rams to return to Stamford Bridge.
Morris insisted he was never going to stand in Lampard’s way if the opportunity to manage the Blues ever arose.
‘If you become obstructive in these situations, it doesn’t bode well for the future,’ he said.
‘I have a great relationship with Frank. Our relationship with Frank and Chelsea is really important. It is critical we maintain that. I have no regrets whether he stays or goes.
‘You don’t have to give it (permission for Chelsea to speak to Lampard), but when we interviewed Frank originally, we talked about this very eventuality, that at some stage he will want to manage Chelsea.
‘Let’s face it that job comes around pretty frequently so it was always a risk. We didn’t think it would happen at the end of the first season, but you couldn’t have predicted what was going to happen with them having a manager (Maurizio Sarri) moving on, their transfer ban. There is a whole raft of things that brought about this opportunity.
‘Frank hasn’t gone through this season thinking ‘I’m waiting for the opportunity at Chelsea’. This is circumstances bringing this about. Loyalty is something that only goes so far when opportunity is really strong.’
However, Morris hasn’t given up completely on the idea that Lampard may remain at Pride Park for another season.
‘For Frank it’s a win-win. He can’t lose in this situation. Let’s face it, it is still not a done deal. As far as I’m concerned, I’m hoping this guy will manage us next season,’ he added.
“I’m not giving up hope on that but you have to say at some point it will happen, whether it is now or in the future. If he stays, fantastic, we will be in a better shape next season than this.
“Does he owe me anything? No. The way I look at this is for a first season, it was fantastic. He helped bring back the buzz, the style of football. Frank allowed us to define the model for the club, it’s worth a lot to me. That’s payback.
Kovacic agreement reported to be close
Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano reported in a tweet on Wednesday that a deal for Mateo Kovacic to remain at Chelsea on a permanent basis is close to completion
Romano, who lists himself as a contributor to a number of media outlets including Sky Sports and The Guardian, indicated the Blues are close to coming to an agreement with Real Madrid for the Croatian, who spent last season on loan at Stamford Bridge.
‘Chelsea are going to buy Mateo Kovacic on a permanent deal from Real Madrid. €50M add-ons included, total agreement is close now,’ Romano tweeted.
Although Chelsea are serving a transfer ban, it has been reported that UEFA will allow a deal to be done for Kovacic as he was registered to play for the Blues last season.