Manchester United legend Gary Neville believes the performances of Chelsea under Frank Lampard have invigorated owner Roman Abramovich. The Blues started the previous campaign under a transfer ban and that saw Lampard work with some of the academy graduates at the club with plenty of success.
During the backend of the season, there were suggestions that the Blues could spend after their embargo was lifted, but that was not the case with the hierarchy deciding to wait until the summer. Despite this, Lampard managed to guide the Blues a top-four finish in the Premier League standings and Neville feels the 41-year-old’s flamboyance has paved the way for the summer spending spree.
He told Sky Sports: “Chelsea’s interesting because Roman Abramovich has wanted for 15 years a flamboyant team, and every time he’s gone for the flamboyant managers to try and get the flamboyant team, he’s been pulled back to that more methodical type of approach that’s been successful for the club. I think this year he’s probably investing, partly because of Covid and he sees an opportunity to exploit the market, but I think because what Frank Lampard has done has invigorated him.”
The west London giants have already spent more than £200m on new purchases this summer and the spending spree is expected to continue. They have bolstered the attack with the signings of Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz while Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell and Malang Sarr have been brought in to reinforce the defence.
Lampard is still understood to be eyeing a new goalkeeper to compete with Kepa Arrizabalaga and Rennes’ Edouard Mendy appears the top target. On the other hand, Declan Rice has also emerged as a potential midfield option amid doubts regarding the future of N’Golo Kante. The Frenchman was in-and-out of the starting lineup last season due to multiple injuries.