Derby County have confirmed they have allowed Chelsea permission to speak with their former player Frank Lampard over returning to Stamford Bridge as manager.

Lampard has been linked with a return to the Bridge since Maurizio Sarri left the Blues for Italian side Juventus. The west London side would have to pay the Rams about £4m if they appoint Lampard.

“Derby County Football Club can confirm that they have granted permission for Chelsea Football Club to speak to Frank Lampard about the vacant managerial position at Stamford Bridge,” a statement read.

"With pre-season fast approaching for both clubs it is hoped this will allow Chelsea to swiftly conclude their discussions. The club will make no further comment until it is appropriate to do so."

The former England international joined Chelsea from boyhood club West Ham for a fee of £11m in 2001. In his 13-year-old stay, he won Champions League and a Europa League at the club, while also helping them to win three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and two League Cups.