Gillingham manager Steve Evans has given his verdict on the Celtic managerial speculation as he touted Frank Lampard for the top job.
Evans, a well-known Celtic supporter, once spoke of his desire to replace Brendan Rodgers at Parkhead [Scottish Sun]. In the end, the job was given to Neil Lennon, who ultimately failed to guide us to 10-in-a-row.
Now, the hunt is on for his successor, and supporters are demanding ambition from the club. That’s something Evans seems to believe would be represented if a move for Lampard came to fruition.
The former Chelsea boss has been out of work since January after being sacked by the Blues. And Evans believes that he would certainly attract a huge welcome if he became the new Hoops boss.
As quoted by the Scottish Sun, Evans said: “Frank Lampard would be my choice. He’d inspire the proper side of Glasgow. Celtic need to appoint the highest-profile manager. Rangers did that with Steven Gerrard, who’s doing a great job. He’s turned them around because he is an attraction. Players want to play for him.
“Lampard would inspire by the way his teams are set up and also by the way he believes in young players which he demonstrated at Derby and Chelsea. Plus he could do it by his presence alone, just like Gerrard.
“If Frank was announced as Celtic’s new boss, and supporters were allowed back in the stadium, there would be 60,000 fans welcoming him at Glasgow Airport.”
Lampard an interesting choice in Celtic managerial discussion
I can totally understand the pessimism in appointing the Chelsea legend. But personally, I would be willing to suggest much of that is down to the fact he once said he followed Rangers [Scottish Sun].
The above means nothing. Of course, many will also be concerned that Lampard failed to get the best out of some world-class signings after being backed in the summer. The likes of Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, and Kai Havertz have all struggled to be standouts. What was once a Chelsea side being touted as title contenders, they now sit over 20 points off the pace.
But it hasn’t been all doom and goom in Lampard’s managerial career. Whilst he was largely appointed Chelsea boss in the summer of 2019 due to his reputation at Stamford Bridge, he had done an impressive job at Derby.
After managing to bag a play-off position, Lampard got the better of Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds in the semi-finals. A narrow 2-1 final loss to Aston Villa would see his Derby side fail to reach the Premier League. But for a first season in charge, it was impressive stuff.
He also managed a top-four finish during his first season at Chelsea. This was whilst the club had a transfer embargo and had to rely on the youth. Lampard has helped boost the development of players such as Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount, and Reece James respectively.
It’s not been as impressive this season, but it looks like a top-four finish could be saved by Thomas Tuchel. Things were hardly going disastrously when Lampard was sacked. Had he previously claimed he followed Celtic and not Rangers, I believe many would view him differently.