Old rivalries renewed
One of the biggest debates amongst fans of the Premier League is who was the better central midfielder, Frank Lampard or Steve Gerrard.
Both were world-class talents and offered very different things to their respective sides. And whilst many believed that said rivalry was created by fans and only meant anything to fans, Frank Lampard has himself revealed this week the ‘competitive jealously’ between him and Gerrard.
“Maybe a tiny bit in a competitive nature and it wasn’t just me and Stevie, I was competitive as a player,” he explained. “Whenever other midfielders scored goals my eyes shot up, I was a bit like that. When I grew up I think it was called professional jealousy. My dad called it that.
“It’s not a bad thing if honed in the right direction. But that is in your younger years. I think as you get older you just respect a player that is of the level of Steven. He was just incredibly high level of a player.”
Both players have since hung up their boots and stepped into the dugout. Lampard began life as a manger by cutting his teeth at Derby County before taking over long-time club Chelsea in the midst of a transfer ban.
Lampard was then sacked in 2021 and replaced by Thomas Tuchel before taking the Everton job earlier this year.
Gerrard, meanwhile, enjoyed success with Rangers before stepping down to return to the Premier League with Aston Villa in November of 2021.
As a result, the two greats of the game met in the dugout for the first time, on Saturday.
So, who came out on top after both managers were able to have a summer to truly get to know their players and drill their style into them?
Aston Villa started the tie the brighter of the two sides and took the lead inside 31 minutes via Danny Ings.
Everton grew into the game and had plenty of goal attempts. However, Dominic Calvert-Lewin is still clearly a big miss, with just three of those efforts being on target.
Aston Villa then killed the game off after 85 minutes when Ollie Watkins slipped in Emi Buendia who tapped into an open net.
Everton did get a goal back after 87 minutes thanks to an own goal from Lucas Digne, but it was too little, too late, handing Steven Gerrard the win in the first-ever Lampard vs Gerrard managerial clash.
One of the main factors a manager is judged on is how much he has spent and how much success that spending brought them.
So who has spent more, Frank Lampard or Steven Gerrard?
Total spend: £287.46m
Aston Villa: £76.5m
Total spend: £109.69
Premier League record
Goals For: 40
Goals Against: 37
Goal difference: +3
Goals scored per 90: 1.38
Goals conceded per 90: 1.27
Goals for: 122
Goals against: 111
Goal difference: +11
Goals scored per 90: 1.58
Goals conceded per 90: 1.44