Chelsea Football Club took the ominous decision to sack manager Frank Lampard on Monday, bringing an end to the legend's below-average performance at the helm of the club.
Although it can be argued that Lampard did not have as disastrous a season as several other managers before him, winning games and putting on good performances is expected from the board. The former England international failed to provide either to the Chelsea faithful in the recent past.
The Roman Abramovich effect
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, an Israeli-Russian businessman and politician, is known to be very ruthless when it comes to non-performing managers. Lampard was lucky to survive for as long as he did thanks to the immaculate reputation he had as a player.
Fifteen managers have held the reins at Stamford Bridge before Lampard ever since Abramovich took over in 2000. Rival clubs Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool have only had four, five and six managers respectively in the same time period.
What Frank Lampard did wrong at Chelsea
Now that we have established that Chelsea have historically given managers very little time to settle in and make the system work for themselves, we also need to understand why Lampard got the sack.
It has to be noted that he is the first manager in the club's history to have the lowest number of points per game. It is hard to fathom how he was given a free hand to spend close to 200 million Euros in the summer transfer window.
Lampard was right to Brazilian centre-back Thiago Silva as a free agent from Paris Saint-Germain. However, his other signings, including centre-forward Timo Werner, have not exactly lit up the Premier League.
Record-signing Kepa Arrizabalaga has had a poor time between the sticks, and although there are signs of the Spaniard regaining his form, all the blame has been laid at Lampard's feet for failing to inspire him.
The former manager was also held responsible for the relentless (and apparently fruitless) pursuit of England and West Ham United's central midfielder Declan Rice along with the reported falling-outs between several players.
Chelsea are in 9th position in the league table at the moment with 29 points to their name in 19 matches. Recent defeats to Leicester City, Manchester City and Arsenal did not help Lampard's cause at all. Chelsea have also not won against 'top six' opposition in the Premier League this season.
The London side drew their matches with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur and have lost to both Arsenal and Liverpool this season.
Amid the doom and the gloom, it needs to be remembered that Chelsea, under Frank Lampard, have qualified for the knockout stage of the UEFA Champions League and this is a very big positive.
Chelsea were incredibly short-sighted in their handling of a man who was given the responsibility and freedom to create a new system and 'dynasty' at Stamford Bridge ahead of the 2020/21 season.
Abramovich would have done well to stick with the club legend for a little while longer as this would have given the squad some time to come to terms with his philosophy.