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Dublin: 2 °C Wednesday 29 January, 2020

Lampard not dreaming of Chelsea job as he prepares for Stamford Bridge return tonight

The Blues’ record goalscorer has vowed not to celebrate in London as his Derby County side line out.

 Derby County manager Frank Lampard.
Derby County manager Frank Lampard.
Image: Dan Mullan

FRANK LAMPARD IS not dreaming of managing Chelsea until his achievements as a coach merit consideration, as he prepares to take his Derby County side to Stamford Bridge in the Carabao Cup this evening.

Derby knocked out Manchester United at Old Trafford in the competition’s previous round, with Lampard having guided the Rams to sixth in the Championship table since starting in his first managerial role in August.

But Chelsea’s all-time record goalscorer, who recorded 211 goals in 648 games across 12 years in west London, says that leading the club from the dugout is not on his agenda as he cuts his teeth as a manager.

“No, because I am pragmatic about those things,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

“In football your next game is all-important. I don’t see anything beyond playing Chelsea, and then I will concentrate on ­Birmingham at the weekend.

“So to dream is one thing, but in reality, what happens next will rely on what I do here. Hopefully I can bring success to this club.”

The former England midfielder has faced his old team before since leaving Chelsea, scoring for Manchester City in 2014 during a season-long loan spell from MLS outfit New York City.

Lampard refrained from celebrating his goal that day at the Etihad Stadium, and he expects to show the same restraint should the Rams repeat their surprise success at Old Trafford earlier in October.

“It will be easy because I respect the club,” he said. “When I scored against them, I didn’t celebrate. I wouldn’t have done in a million years. Although I was doing my job, I love Chelsea and had a strong bond with the fans that will hopefully never go.

“As a manager, I will be respectful because I have to appreciate what the club did for me. I will feel proud and honoured going back to a place I called home for 13 years and still feels like home.

“This is my working home now and I have got a great affiliation with this club already, but I can’t forget 13 years of my career.”

Derby have been boosted by Chelsea allowing loanees Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori to play on Wednesday as they look to end Maurizio Sarri’s unbeaten start to life as Blues boss.

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