Club legend Frank Lampard took control of Chelsea in the summer of 2019 following a strong showing with Derby County in the Championship and led the Blues to an FA Cup final and a place in the Premier League’s top four. Considering the club were operating with the loss of the league’s best player in Eden Hazard and a transfer ban, it was a successful enough debut campaign in the dugout for Lampard.
The summer of 2020 has seen a huge influx of star-studded names make their way to Stamford Bridge, which should already make the Blues one of the most eye-watering sides in the game to play with. Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell have all joined up with the likes of Christian Pulisic, Matteo Kovacic and Mason Mount at the Bridge, and the soccer betting odds suggest Chelsea could be on track to dismantle the hegemony of Liverpool and Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table.
Balancing this new level of expectation is a task in itself, and Chelsea’s new star-studded will have to look to do better on the continent as well with the Blues being humbled 7-1 on aggregate in the Champions League against Bayern Munich. What’s more, Lampard has a serious juggling act on his hands after opening the door to so many talented young players over the course of the 2019-20 campaign with the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi, Fikayo Tomori, Reece James and Billy Gilmour all impressing in spells over the course of the season.
There are superstars arriving in West London, however managing expectations and balancing out the appearances could make things more difficult than what some people might first assume.
Where do you even begin trying to rebuild Barcelona? Two managers sacked, a squad whose average age is peaking past 30, an 8-2 humbling to cap off another embarrassing Champions League campaign and a star player that has just come off a highly publiclised attempt to leave the club – things are not going well for the Catalan club.
Negotiating all of these things is hard in amongst themselves, however Barcelona are also a club that have strict footballing principles and weighty expectations that have to be hit even in the midst of a crisis.
Winning La Liga and the Copa Del Rey is an expectancy for Barca fans and isn’t necessarily enough to keep the pressure off your back anymore. Getting over the Champions League curse, promoting more young talents from within to refresh the squad and playing more of the Barcelona way are all non-negotiable to the Catalan faithful and make the Barcelona job one of the hardest in the world to pick up and be successful in.
After five years playing blistering football and promoting plenty of young exciting players, Bournemouth’s time in the Premier League has come to an end. As well as letting go of instrumental players such as Nathan Ake, Callum Wilson and Ryan Fraser, the Cherries also waved goodbye to their legendary manager, Eddie Howe.
Howe cut a weary and tired figure during the end of his time on the south coast, and it was clear the club are in need of a fresh approach for their latest chapter in England’s second division. Given how they were always a side more used to playing in the lower tiers of English football, the club are dangerously approaching a crossroads in what their identity is shaping up like.
There are still plenty of reasons to look forward as a Bournemouth fan however, with the club maintaining a strong fanbase and a way of running themselves that means they are never pulled too far into the midst of a crisis. Getting the Cherries back into the Prem could be a challenge, however players will at least be given plenty of time and have a structure that allows for building up the club in exactly the kind of way they want.