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Chelsea need ‘difficult guy’ Thomas Tuchel to change if latest managerial gamble is to pay off

And so ends the Frank Lampard era. If it can even be called that. Chelsea gave the club legend 17 months in charge at Stamford Bridge, and then cut ties at the first genuine sign of trouble.

That is no surprise. This is what the Blues have always done under Roman Abramovich. Lampard, despite his status, was treated no differently to the head coaches that had come before him, many of whom were sacked when he was still a key part of the Chelsea midfield.

The reasons for Lampard’s departure are myriad. From growing dressing room tension to the failure to get the best out of big-money signings, the Blues hierarchy could point to several issues that have emerged in recent months.

Yet the simple reality is results and performances have not been good enough in recent weeks. Chelsea, at the halfway point of the campaign, sit ninth in the Premier League table. Although they are only five points off fourth-placed Liverpool.

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That left the Blues with two options: hold their nerve and give Lampard every opportunity to fulfil his long-term vision at Stamford Bridge, or take the easy decision and dispense with the 42-year-old. It’s no surprise the club opted for the latter.

Chelsea have rolled the dice. Not just by getting rid of Lampard – a decision which has been met with disappointment by a large section of the fanbase – but by opting to bring in Thomas Tuchel.

The German is set to be announced as the Blues’ head coach tomorrow, although whether he will be able to take charge of the matches against Wolverhampton Wanderers and Burnley due to Covid-19 quarantine restrictions remains unclear.

Out of work since being sacked last month by Paris Saint-Germain, Tuchel is an easy pick up for Chelsea. He is an excellent coach with a trophy-winning pedigree; the 47-year-old lifted the DFB Pokal while at Borussia Dortmund and then clinched two…

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