Max Allegri, whom Sarri will replace in Turin, was the early favourite to inherit the Stamford Bridge hot-seat and was even said to be taking English lessons ahead of a potential move to the Premier League.
The 51-year-old, however, is likely to undertake a sabbatical forcing Chelsea to pursue alternative options. Rafael Benitez was linked with a return to Stamford Bridge earlier this week, while Ajax’s Erik ten Hag is also said to be under consideration.
Watford’s Javi Gracia is another rumoured candidate but Lampard has leaped to the front of the cue having held preliminary discussions with the Chelsea hierarchy, according to Goal.
Chelsea are said to hold reservations over Lampard’s suitability given his lack of managerial experience with just one season at Derby under his belt.
The 40-year-old narrowly missed out on promotion after leading an exciting young Derby side to the play-off final where they lost narrowly to an Aston Villa side coached by John Terry.
‘That is genius!’ 😍
One from the archives, and it’s a beauty courtesy of Frank Lampard! 🎞 pic.twitter.com/FuPGhEXDNl
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) June 11, 2019
‘It’s been a bit of an obvious link all season. If I say it is maybe because of where we’re at in the final, and we’re being talked about, and we’ve had a good year, and then I get linked because of my 13 years at the club. I understand the link,’ said Lampard ahead of Derby’s Wembley defeat.
‘But in terms of how I’m seeing it, I don’t want to think about it. I want to talk about Monday, I want to work with the team, I want to get this over the line for us.
‘I’ve got two years left on my contract here and I see no further than Monday. I will sit down with Mel after the game, which was planned before all this [Chelsea] talk anyway, to see firstly what the result was on Monday, because that’s going to be defining how we chat, and to see where the club goes forward. It’s as simple as that.’