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Frank Lampard coy over succeeding Michael Emenalo at Chelsea

Gab Marcotti explains Michael Emenalo's resignation as Chelsea technical director and Antonio Conte's role in him leaving.
Former Chelsea star Frank Lampard hailed Jose Mourinho as the biggest influence on his playing career.

Frank Lampard has reiterated that he would love to be involved with Chelsea "in some way" amid speculation that he could be chosen to succeed Michael Emenalo as the club's technical director.

Emenalo announced his surprise decision to resign from his role on Monday after 10 years at Chelsea, and in the statement confirming his departure club director Marina Granovskaia revealed that the Premier League champions are now reviewing their "management structure."

It is not yet clear if Chelsea will appoint a new technical director to assume all of Emenalo's former duties, but Lampard -- who has been working as a pundit for BT Sport and studying his coaching badges since announcing his retirement in February -- has been mentioned as a possible candidate.

Asked whether he would be interested in the job, Lampard said at a coaching session with local footballers on Thursday in Tokyo: "I worked with Michael for seven or eight years and his role at the club coincided with the most successful period in Chelsea's history so I think he deserves a lot of credit from that.

"Everyone at Chelsea wishes him well as he moves on. In terms of myself, I don't know. I'm a Chelsea person, I'd love to be involved with the club long-term in some way. We'll see."

Lampard has made no secret of his desire to pursue a career in management with a view to one day putting himself in position to coach Chelsea. He has been allowed to undertake several of his UEFA coaching modules at Cobham, working mainly with the club's academy players, and sources have told ESPN FC that Chelsea are committed to finding a role for their all-time top scorer within the club should he want one.

As a midfielder, Frank Lampard was still capable of scoring plenty of goals for Chelsea, including 27 during the 2009-10 season.
Frank Lampard scored 211 goals in all competitions for the club.

"I need to learn," he added. "Having played for 20 years doesn't necessarily make you a great manager, so I have to learn the ropes, but I would love to be able to put my experiences as a player.

"Of course, having been in Chelsea for so long, that would be the club, that would be my dream, but that's not an easy path.

"I've worked with many managers so I'd like to think that I could take the good and the bad from all the managers I've had and find my own way. I would love to work with young players and try and improve them not just as players but as young people."

Lampard also had his say on the debate over the use of Video Assistant Referees (VAR) in football, admitting that he has reservations over the widespread use of technology in officiating.

"Moving forward, I think we have to be very careful how much we go to technology," he insisted. "We have to make sure we are not trying to video every moment of a game, trying to make video decisions. Sometimes the referee will have a different opinion about whether something is a red card or a yellow card."

Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.

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