Claudio Ranieri believes Frank Lampard would be feeling both proud and sad to watch Chelsea in the FA Cup final on Saturday.
Lampard lost his job as Chelsea manager at the end of January. His Chelsea side topped the Premier League table in early December but a poor run of results during the festive fixtures ultimately cost him his job.
Thomas Tuchel then took over the reign and did incredibly well. Less than four months since his arrival, Chelsea are in two finals and in a good position in the top four race.
Ranieri was in a similar situation to Lampard back in 2004.
He built the team and led the team to a second-place finish in the Premier League in 2003/04 but was deemed not enough by Roman Abramovich who just took over the club ownership.
His successor Jose Mourinho then went on to win the club’s first Premier League title with core players such as Lampard, John Terry, Claude Makelele whom Ranieri brought in and nurtured.
If anyone knows how Lampard might have felt, it would be Ranieri, and the Sampdoria manager explained what he thinks.
“I think Frank will be very proud to have [helped integrated] a lot of young players [into the current Chelsea squad],” Ranieri told BT Sport.
“Because there are so many good players [currently at Chelsea].
“Of course, Frank will also be sad because he started to build the team.
“But I think Frank is also an intelligent man. He understood where he made a little mistake.
“And I think the next team should be much better for Frank.”