Belfast Telegraph

Lampard not trying to be ‘Mr Tough Guy’ with substantial player fines

Among the punishments facing the Chelsea players is a £20,000 fine for being late for training, according to a leaked list.

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says fines will go to charity (Anthony Devlin/PA)
Chelsea manager Frank Lampard says fines will go to charity (Anthony Devlin/PA)

By Nick Purewal, PA

Frank Lampard has insisted he is not a “Mr Tough Guy” manager despite confirming Chelsea’s new hefty fines structure was his idea.

The Blues boss said money levied from player fines will be donated to charities, with the recently leaked list of internal fines showing anyone late for training will face a £20,000 penalty.

Lampard revealed he sat down with captain Cesar Azpilicueta to draw up the list before the start of the season, and maintained that the punishments are not draconian.

“I can understand it might sound harsh but it’s not harsh if you’re not late; that’s one thing,” he said.

“I think we put in the discipline for one reason.

“My only concern when that came out was it makes me look like I’m trying to be Mr Tough Guy. I’m not.

“We spoke with the players and I gave the list to Azpilicueta when we set out the fines. In fact I was asking him if there were any areas you see because I wanted to know what happened last year, whether the players were happy, were they not.

“That came into the picture as well so it’s certainly a bit of a joint effort. Maybe the numbers were chosen by myself to a degree.

“I do think discipline is an important thing and I’m very happy to work with the players.”

Lampard believes his players are comfortable with the fines system, and insisted he will be happy to see good causes benefit.

“I want to be successful; I expect them to look after each other on the pitch and when they train, so I expect them to respect each other in terms of turning up,” said Lampard.

“If you talk about coming late to training, we arrive at 10 and we start training at 11.

“If you’re late for training you’re effectively an hour and 15 minutes late without any excuse, that’s quite a big deal if you’re preparing for a game against Manchester City on the next day.

“I know the fines are relative, people can have their own mind. But the players are certainly big in the setting up of that and I think it’s important to have discipline in the workplace.

“The players were part of the process. I’m not here to be a dictator and make things difficult.

“We’re here to be successful as a football club and discipline’s part of it and I worked with them in putting it together.

“The fine money goes to charities and it said on the form about having certain team get-togethers. We haven’t had any of those yet.

“Predominantly it will go to charities of our choice. I don’t mind as long as it’s good causes.”

PA

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