Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard, has dismissed remarks made by Manchester United legend, Roy Keane, that he avoids criticism in his job because he is English.
The Blues currently sit in fourth position on the Premier League table, five points clear of the fifth-placed Red Devils.
Speaking to Sky Sports after Chelsea’s 1-0 loss to Newcastle United on Saturday, Keane said: “I watched Chelsea last night, decent team, they couldn’t get the job done.
“They’ve lost eight games but for some reason, Frank’s doing alright, maybe ’cause he’s English, I don’t know.”
However, speaking to reporters on Monday, Lampard praised Keane for the passion in his punditry but insisted he isn’t treated differently as a manager because of his birth country.
“[That comment] was the moment my ears pricked up because I don’t think being English gives you any sort of a bye from criticism.
“In fact, I heard quite a lot when I first got this job of [people] writing me off because I’m young and English and only had a year at Derby.
“Fair play to Roy, I love watching him talk about football because of how passionate and to the point he is, but I don’t think I’ve had any byes for being English and sometimes it feels slightly different.
“I don’t need to name names. But certain people were saying you shouldn’t give him the job. Give it to people who have got experience of doing well in Italy or somewhere else or whatever. I don’t even know where to go with it. We were just all aware there would be those sorts of feeling.
“I don’t feel isolated [as an English manager in the Premier League]. A manager that comes from another country will get praise or criticism. A manager that is English and home-grown will get praise or criticism at different points of their career. That is why I try not to get drawn on it. What I wouldn’t say is that I only get praise because I am English – I think every manager gets the same,” Lampard said.