Thiago Silva has sent a heartfelt message to Frank Lampard after his sacking as Chelsea manager.
Veteran defender Silva has been outstanding since being signed in the summer and made his gratitude to Lampard clear after the decision to axe him.
In a post on Instagram, Silva wrote: “As I told you, it seemed like we had been working together for 10 years!! Thank you very much for everything legend.”
Lampard, Chelsea’s all-time record goalscorer, leaves with the club ninth in the table, having lost five of their past eight Premier League matches.
He spent 18 months at the helm, delivering a top-four finish in his first season in the job despite a transfer ban.
Former Paris St-Germain and Borussia Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel is expected to take over at Stamford Bridge.
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In a statement, Chelsea said: “This has been a very difficult decision, and not one that the owner and the board have taken lightly.
“We are grateful to Frank for what he has achieved in his time as head coach of the club. However, recent results and performances have not met the club’s expectations, leaving the club mid-table without any clear path to sustained improvement.
“There can never be a good time to part ways with a club legend such as Frank, but after lengthy deliberation and consideration it was decided a change is needed now to give the club time to improve performances and results this season.”