Frank Lampard's first season as Chelsea boss has been hailed as “very successful” by the club's chairman before backing him in a summer spending spree.
The ex-Blues midfielder led Chelsea to fourth place in the Premier League to guarantee Champions League football next season despite a transfer ban. The Blues also lost the FA Cup final to Arsenal.
"In the round we think it was a very successful season," said chairman Bruce Buck. "I think obviously we would have been a little bit happier if we had won the FA Cup.
“But I'm sure the manager and the players were gutted not to lift the trophy.”
Chelsea have already signed Germany striker Timo Werner from RB Leipzig and Morocco playmaker Hakim Ziyech from Ajax.
And in a bid to close the gap on the top two, Lampard now wants defensive reinforcements with a new goalkeeper, a left-back and another midfielder with Nick Pope, Ben Chilwell and Kai Havertz on the shopping list.
"Frank Lampard is a very positive force for Chelsea," Buck added. "He's Chelsea through and through and that continues to show through.
"He carries a lot of credibility. It's an exciting time for Chelsea."
Lampard's first campaign has split opinion among football fans though, after Chelsea slipped one position to fourth earning six points fewer than predecessor Maurizio Sarri last season.
Former Chelsea striker Tony Cascarino has questioned the work Lampard is doing with his team, claiming they are easy to beat.
“I don’t know who is coaching the players at Chelsea – they’re a mess!" Cascarino told talkSPORT. “Defensively, they are a total mess.
“They have got quality, they have world class players in their team and have got some of the best youngsters around – there are a lot of strings to Frank Lampard’s bow.
“But if he doesn’t get this defensive side right and make Chelsea much tougher to beat, they are not going to do anything."
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