Confirmation of the arrival of Hakim Ziyech from Ajax, at the conclusion of 2019/20, will give Frank Lampard his first major signing as Chelsea manager – and significantly later than his appointment. If Lampard’s first major signing taking so long was not confirmation by itself that Chelsea had entered a new area, then the circumstances involved in Ziyech’s arrival should take that confirmation beyond doubt.
He will join in the same transfer window in which Pedro and Willian are expected to leave, and could potentially become the long-term successor to Eden Hazard. Where once Hazard, Willian and Pedro were vying for selection, Mason Mount, Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are likely to do the same. “(Lampard) was such a big player and he was a midfielder so I can learn a lot from him,” Ziyech has since said. “In that regard, I have a lot to learn. I had a good feeling after our talks and that feeling only became stronger. There was no doubt in my mind. I like the style of play; they play really attacking football, and that is something that fits me.”