Frank Lampard must wait for his chance to achieve milestone for Chelsea

Rafael Benitez to rest midfielder tonight

Rafael Benitez has promised that Frank Lampard will break the Chelsea goal-scoring record this season, but he will not give him the chance to score his 200th tomorrow night.

Lampard has scored 199 Chelsea goals, and he has an excellent chance of breaking Bobby Tambling's record of 202 before his possible departure this summer. There will be no progress tonight, though, with Lampard rested for Chelsea's Europa League last-32 second leg at home against Sparta Prague, in which they already have a 1-0 lead from the first leg.

Chelsea have been awash with midweek fixtures for months and interim manager Benitez has left Lampard out of tonight's squad, along with Demba Ba and Branislav Ivanovic.

"We had a problem," Benitez explained. "Ramires and Frank have been playing too many games. It's different in a normal team playing once a week. Here, the last five games could be in three weeks. Six games in three weeks is too much for anyone, even Ramires and Frank."

On Sunday, Chelsea travel to Manchester City, and victory would move them within one point of the Premier League champions. "The manager has to keep an eye on everything if he can," Benitez said. "We are thinking a bit about that, but the priority will be this game [tomorrow night]."

Despite Lampard's absence this evening, there are still 12 Premier League games left as well as likely Europa League and FA Cup ties for him and Benitez was certain that he would break Tambling's record.

"I can see how he trains and what he's doing," said Benitez. "I can see him scoring more goals. He'll score more than four or five before now and the end of the season.

"If he can score a lot of goals it will be fantastic for him and for us. Everyone knows he's close. They will try to help if we have a chance. If we have a penalty, he can take it. He's doing well, scoring goals."

Gary Cahill said that Chelsea players were very keen for Lampard to break the record: "Everyone's aware of it, for definite, and willing him on. I feel he can do it, and in the form he's in at the minute you wouldn't bet against him."

"He's phenomenal, works hard on his game, is in great form at the minute banging goals in for club and country."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003