Gianfranco Zola had a prominent role under Maurizio Sarri last year, but it looks like his one-year stint as assistant manager at Chelsea is coming to an end. Despite recent reports that he’s hoping to stay on with the club as part of incoming head coach Frank Lampard’s coaching staff, his agent today has confirmed that Zola is once again ready to try his hand at being a manager instead.
“Gianfranco’s contract with Chelsea expires at the end of the month. After a season of hard work and fantastic results alongside Maurizio Sarri, he is ready to take the next step in his own management career.”
-Fulvio Marrucco; source: Guardian
While Zola’s experience as a player, coach and manager could be quite valuable to Lampard’s young support staff, including Jody Morris and Shay Given, it sounds like that may not be an option. And since Zola certainly doesn’t want to be “just” a club ambassador, it seems like he’s ready to try being a manager once again. His CV so far in that regard does not make for excellent reading — minor success at Watford aside — but perhaps with added experience, he’s ready to improve on his career win-rate of just over 30 per cent. Zola’s last stint as manager was in charge of Birmingham City in early 2017, when he won just 2 out of 24 games. The only way is up from there!
Either way, we will always love Zola, and the club’s doors will surely always be open for his return.