Frank Lampard’s job at Chelsea is under serious threat with the club sitting in eighth place following four defeats in six Premier League games, according to reports.
The Blues were comfortably beaten 3-1 by Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City on Sunday evening to add to Lampard’s recent woes at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea had slumped down the table following previous defeats to Everton, Wolves, Arsenal but the west Londoners are now behind Everton and Aston Villa in the table with both sides having games in hand over Lampard’s side.
And according to The Athletic, the Blues are looking into alternative options for the Chelsea head coach role following Lampard’s recent form at Stamford Bridge.
The report says Chelsea are concerned about the form of new attacking signings Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, who were part of a £253million rebuild at Stamford Bridge over the summer.
Former RB Leipzig striker Werner is now without a goal in nine league games despite scoring 28 times in 34 games for the German club last season.
Meanwhile, £89m signing Havertz has scored in just two Chelsea matches since his arrival for Bayer Leverkusen, with Lampard leaving the 21-year-old out of the starting line-up in their last four league games.
New signings Hakim Ziyech and Ben Chilwell have impressed in places though have struggled with injuries while the novelty of Thiago Silva and Edouard Mendy bolstering the defence has worn off following the recent defeats.
The Athletic also claim tensions are growing between Lampard and several members of the Chelsea first-team squad following public criticism during the busy winter schedule.
Lampard fielded questions over his future following the latest defeat to Manchester City – which saw Guardiola’s side move 3-0 up at half-time – but admitted he was not worried about his immediate future.
He told reporters: ‘I understand the minute that you lose a few games in a short period of time then everyone looks and asks questions. Then everyone looks at it differently and says you spent that much money.
‘I will always feel the heat. I felt the heat when we were on our good run because I know that around the corner can be the negative.
‘I am not going to speak for people above me because I can never do that. That’s why I couldn’t answer a month ago about me getting a new contract, I can’t answer what they’re thinking about now but it is what it is.
‘It is my job to focus on working, not what they’re thinking, that would just distract me and I can’t do it.’
Lampard is a club legend at Chelsea after scoring a club-record 211 goals for the Blues in his playing days, while he also has a special relationship with owner Roman Abramovich.
The 42-year-old was given the Chelsea head coach job just one year into his senior management career in the summer 2019, with the Blues in the middle of a transfer ban when Lampard was appointed.
The Chelsea head coach secured a top-four finish last season and helped the Blues reach the FA Cup final but has struggled to improve on that platform this season.
The west Londoners are three points off the top four but can drop to ninth if Southampton avoid defeat to Liverpool on Monday night.
Chelsea are also just three points ahead of London rivals Arsenal, who endured their worst league start in 50 years – though Mikel Arteta’s side have won their last three games.
Rumours as to a potential Lampard replacement circulated during the final week of 2020 as German newspaper Bild claimed Chelsea would be interested in bringing in Thomas Tuchel as manager following his sacking at PSG.
The report from Germany claimed Tuchel would be open to a move to Stamford Bridge to work with Werner, Havertz and defender Antonio Rudiger.