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03 February 2022

Frank Lampard ‘under no illusions’ as to the size of his task at Everton

03 February 2022

Frank Lampard acknowledges he has a tough job on his hands from the outset at Everton

Former Chelsea boss Lampard was confirmed as the Toffees’ new manager on Monday, succeeding Rafael Benitez at a club that has endured a tough season to date.

Lampard inherits a team sitting 16th in the Premier League and having won just one league game in the last 14.

Speaking at his first press conference in the job, Lampard said: “In pure footballing terms we know we are in the position the club doesn’t want to be in, but I have got a lot of belief in the squad.

“I have been watching the games closely from the outside, so I am under no illusions, but I believe we have a squad that can improve quickly.

“That starts with work on the training ground and the mindset of the group, but I understand in the short term the job is to improve our league position.

“In the long term, it is clear it is a club with big ambition, big history, a huge fanbase and a desire throughout to improve.

“There is a lot of work to be done but I am very proud to be given this opportunity to be at the front of it.”

Lampard made an immediate impact following confirmation of his appointment by influencing the deadline-day signings of Dele Alli and Donny Van De Beek.

The permanent deal for Alli was particularly eye-catching and Lampard hopes he can bring the best out of the midfielder, who had stalled at Tottenham in recent times and fallen out of the England picture.

Lampard said: “He’s had difficult times. I would make no bones about it, and nor would he, but there can be many reasons for that.

“My job is to start with a fresh slate with him and have him in an environment that suits him and pushes him to extract that player we know is there.”

Lampard (left) is linking up with his former Chelsea team-mate Ashley Cole once again (Sean Dempsey/PA) (PA Archive)

Another new arrival was also confirmed on Thursday as it was announced that Ashley Cole, Lampard’s former team-mate with Chelsea and England, would be joining the backroom staff as a first-team coach.

Lampard said: “I’m delighted to add Ashley into my backroom team. Everyone knows about his superb playing career and what he has achieved in the game.

“He is now a well-respected coach which has been recognised by his work with England Under-21s.

“He’ll bring a wealth of enthusiasm, game-play experience and is a very good young coach who adds strength to our coaching staff.”

Cole also had a brief spell playing under Lampard at Derby before he retired in 2019. He later took on a role as Academy coach at Chelsea while Lampard was first-team manager at Stamford Bridge.

I was thrilled when Frank asked me to join him at Everton. This is a brilliant opportunity with a fantastic club.

His new position at Everton will not impact his duties with England Under-21s, for whom Cole remains Lee Carsley’s assistant.

Cole said: “I was thrilled when Frank asked me to join him at Everton. This is a brilliant opportunity with a fantastic club and I’m coming here to work hard and try to help bring success to Everton.

“The chance to link up again with Frank was another huge draw. He is an excellent manager and leader. With the rest of the staff here, we have everything in place for what we want to achieve together.”

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