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Saturday 20 July 2019

Lamps to replace Juve-bound Sarri at Chelsea

TRUE BLUE: Frank Lampard REUTERS/Paul Vreeker/File Photo
TRUE BLUE: Frank Lampard REUTERS/Paul Vreeker/File Photo

Chelsea have agreed a compensation deal which could rise to £10million for manager Maurizio Sarri to join Juventus.

Former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard is favourite to succeed the Italian at Stamford Bridge.

Sarri (60) will sign a three-year contract to replace Massimiliano Allegri at Juve - Serie A champions for the last eight years

Sarri only joined Chelsea last summer after three years at Napoli, replacing fellow Italian Antonio Conte. He guided the Blues to third in the Premier League and won the Europa League, but still endured a tough campaign at Stamford Bridge with fans not convinced by his style of play.

Chelsea also reached the Carabao Cup final, but lost to Manchester City in a penalty shoot-out.

Allegri (51) had been linked with the Chelsea job but says he is taking a year off to "recharge his batteries".

Lampard, who led Derby to the Championship play-off final in his first season as a manager, is tipped to replace Sarri.

Should he get the job, Lamps (40) would become Chelsea's first permanent English manager in 23 years.

Chelsea are expected to seek talks with Derby, who are understood to want £4million compensation for losing Lampard.

He notched a club-record 211 goals from 2001 to 2014 and won 106 England caps.

Lampard's assistant Jody Morris could also make a return to his old club. Former Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech is expected to return as technical director, which would prove popular with fans and a good fit given the Czech stopper was a long-term team-mate of Lampard.

Chelsea have appealed against their two-window transfer ban with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), but crucially have not asked for a freezing of that embargo pending the hearing, which is yet to be scheduled.

Lampard spent some time behind the scenes at Chelsea when completing his coaching badges, so still retains detailed knowledge of the Stamford Bridge set-up.

The goal-scoring midfielder would be well placed to work with Chelsea's crop of talented youngsters, who would likely be handed extra first-team chances should that transfer ban be enforced.

Sarri failed to win over the Chelsea fans, who were frustrated by his regimented tactics and his apparent early reluctance to hand central roles to homegrown talents Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Callum Hudson-Odoi.

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