Lampard discusses ‘preliminary conversations’ with Ipswich during Derby unveiling
- Credit: PA
Frank Lampard says he held ‘preliminary talks’ with Ipswich Town before ultimately taking the Derby County manager’s job.
Former England international Lampard was unveiled by the Rams this afternoon after being named manager this morning, where he will look to build on Derby’s sixth-placed finish following the departure of Gary Rowett to Stoke.
Lampard met with Evans regarding the Ipswich vacancy now filled by Paul Hurst, with Blues owner Marcus Evans insisting the ex-Shrewsbury boss was always his No 1 target following his appointment yesterday.
But he described those talks as a “preliminary conversation” during his press conference, insisting the Derby job was the first he had been offered.
“It feels great, it’s a fantastic opportunity,” he told reporters following his appointment.
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“I’m well aware of the tradition here, I’ve walked the hallways... it’s coming off the walls.”
“Success here means promotion,” he stated, when asked of his goals after taking over at Pride Park.
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“I’m here to succeed and be competitive. My aim is to be the best we can be but we are realistic at the same time.
“We want to build on the club’s top six finish in the Championship last season, while at the same time bringing through some of the excellent youth and academy talent we have at Pride Park.
“This is my first job as a manager but I’ve been working towards this for a long time. I’ve worked closely with some of the best coaches in the game and I’m confident in my own abilities and those of the team around me.
“I know it won’t be easy - managing a football team never is - but I’m here to work hard. I’m really looking forward to getting started and to the challenge ahead.”
When Lampard was asked why he wanted to enter management when an easier career surely lay in front on him in broadcasting, he replied: “I was a player and I took stick for 20 years, it’s part of the territory. You can’t take away the love that we have for wanting to succeed.
“I’ve had 18 months away, which has been great for me, but I still had the desire to manage, to work at the cut-throat end, which has been there since I can remember. I missed that.”