Frank Lampard admits his 13 years at Chelsea played a big part in him landing his role as manager, but claims his history also means he is judged “harshly and quickly”.
Speaking to Eddie Hearn’s No Passion No Point podcast, he said he knew he risked damaging his legacy as a player at Chelsea by becoming manager.
“The life of a player is a bubble of selfishness to a degree,” he said.
“The facts and reality is I realise now it’s much harder than playing in terms of it being consuming,” the 42-year-old added.
“The life of a manager is 25 people in the squad, staff in the building, problems with different departments. It’s so far removed from football.
“When you work for your coaching badges, you have to put time in. Then when you start doing it, you have to practise, you have to fail, get better, fail and have relationships with people you never had as a player.
“Players can easily sit there and say they want to be a manager, then they start the road and say: ‘Actually, I want to be a pundit.’ I respect it because being a pundit is tough as well but in terms of management I wanted to test the water.
“A manager gets 50 problems a day. It’s much more consuming but I love it and couldn’t live without it.”
Lampard became Chelsea’s record goalscorer in his 13 years at Stamford Bridge, winning three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and the Champions League.
“I can be really open that it helped me get the job – playing 13 years at the club helped me get the job,” he added.
“I had to put my ego at the door a bit and say that I might ruin what I achieved in 13 years to a degree – because if it doesn’t go well, I will be judged harshly and quickly.
“I am so driven personally that my biggest fear is myself. If I try to pull the wool over your eyes as Chelsea manager, it’s not going to work.
“My football career put me in a decent position. So if that job is taken away from me, as long as I go in thinking ‘can I do the best job?’ then I think that if I have done the best I can, I will be pretty happy.”
Just about all of the greatest uncapped Premier League players ever were pursued by England. And only four of them were English.