Former Chelsea striker Andriy Shevchenko is on Roman Abramovich’s shortlist of managers who could replace Frank Lampard if he decides to axe the under-pressure coach, according to reports.
The west London club have lost four of their last six Premier League matches and slipped to 8th place in the table, with their first-half mauling by Manchester City on Sunday representing a low point of their current slump.
Chelsea are already believed to be planning for the possibility of sacking Lampard and his future at the club is ‘under serious threat’ unless he can turn things around.
Now French outlet Le10 Sport report that one of the names in the frame to replace Lampard is someone he knows very well: former Chelsea teammate Shevchenko.
The 44-year-old spent one-and-a-half rather underwhelming seasons as part of the Blues’ first team as a player, arriving in 2006, though he was shipped out on loan back to AC Milan midway through the 2007/08 season before returning to Dynamo Kyiv on a permanent deal.
Since hanging up his boots he has enjoyed a promising coaching career and has been in charge of the Ukraine national team since 2016, recently guiding the team to Euro 2020 qualification in an unbeaten campaign that saw them finish ahead of holders Portugal.
He has remained on excellent terms with Abramovich since leaving Chelsea – and was often spotted in the owner’s box at Stamford Bridge – while his teenage son, Kristian, plays for the club’s academy.
According to Le10 Sport, Abramovich has been keeping a very close eye on Shevchenko’s progress as a manager and is a big fan, with the Ukrainian icon one of several options being explored in preparation for the possibility of Lampard being sacked.
Speaking about the speculation surrounding his future after the defeat to City, Lampard said: ‘I’ll always feel heat. I felt heat when we were on our good run because I know round the corner can be the negative.’
He continued: ‘I’m not going to speak for people above me or the board because I can never do that. Like how I couldn’t answer one month ago if I was going to get a new contract, it’s not my [area], I don’t start that conversation.
‘As much as I can’t answer now what they’re thinking about, the difficult run of results. It is what it is on those terms. I can only speak about it as I look at it as the manager of the club.’
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