Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand believes the absence of supporters inside Stamford Bridge played a key role in Frank Lampard being sacked by Chelsea.
After less than two years at the helm, Lampard was sacked on Monday morning following a run of five Premier League defeats in their last eight matches.
Having spent more than £220million on new talent during last summer’s transfer window, owner Roman Abramovich felt the time was right to make a change, as the Blues look to try and restore their push for a top-four finish during the second half of the season.
With Lampard out the door, former Paris Saint-Germain manager Thomas Tuchel is set to replace the former England midfielder, with a deal very close to being finalised between both parties.
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For Ferdinand, though, he believes the board has failed to spot the bond between the supporters and Lampard because of their continued absence from Stamford Bridge as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Yes, I think it brings pressure to the board and the decisions at the club,” Ferdinand told BT Sport. “Without the fans there, they don’t see the emotional connection between the manager and the fans which Frank undoubtedly has.
“Everyone was clamouring for him to come into the club, the first year he did remarkably well, got them into the Champions League with the transfer embargo. Now he has had money to spend and that brings different pressure and expectation.”
Last summer’s transfer window saw Chelsea draft in seven new recruits, including the big-name arrivals of the likes of Ben Chilwell, Kai Havertz and Timo Werner.
With that in mind, expectations at Stamford Bridge were immediately raised, placing Lampard under severe pressure to get the very best out of his players and challenge the likes of…