Chelsea are set to sack Frank Lampard and appoint Thomas Tuchel as his successor, sources have told ESPN.
They are expected to make an announcement later on Monday after informing the players by text message not to come to the club’s training base at Cobham for their planned morning session while a formal statement was prepared.
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Chelsea are finalising contract talks with Tuchel, who is currently out of work after parting company with Paris Saint-Germain, with the German expected to sign a deal in the coming hours.
The move comes after Chelsea beat Luton Town 3-1 in Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round clash at Stamford Bridge but following a serious downturn in Premier League form, losing five of their past seven games.
ESPN reported recently that Chelsea were torn over the future direction of the club having become frustrated with a lack of progress under Lampard despite spending £220 million in the summer transfer window.
Chelsea had approached former RB Leipzig coach Ralf Rangnick to take the job on a temporary basis but he ruled himself out of the running. They also sounded out current Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann over whether he would be prepared to leave the club mid-season but sources have confirmed that he also dismissed Chelsea’s interest.
Tuchel has been out of work since December and sources have told ESPN that he sounded out another Premier League club on Saturday to seek their assessment on Chelsea as he mulled over whether to enter advanced talks.
His subsequent decision to pursue an agreement has led to Lampard’s departure, bringing to an end his 19-month tenure in charge of a club he spent 13 years with as a player.