Frank Lampard agrees new contract: Chelsea's logic of not offering him a new deal was alway flawed
The England midfielder today signed a new one-year contract
Thursday 16 May 2013
So Frank Lampard will be going to the United States after all. But not for a new life with LA Galaxy but with Chelsea next week on tour for two exhibition games with Manchester City.
Of all football’s soap operas, the Frank Lampard leaving Chelsea one had become the most absurd.
Today the 34-year-old put an end to it by signing on the dotted line and agreeing to stay at the club for another 12 months. Perhaps, in trademark fashion, he raised his hands skywards and looked up to heaven when the deal was done. Surely it was better than just scoring another goal.
It has been quite a week for Lampard. First the two goals to eclipse Bobby Tambling and establish a new club record of 203 goals. Next a starting place and captain’s armband in the Europa League final against Benfica, a game he almost won before Branislav Ivanovic with a ferocious dipping shot which left the crossbar quivering. And now the new deal.
For Lampard there will perhaps be a quiet satisfaction that he has outlasted Rafa Benitez, the manager who has challenged his traditional position as automatic first-team pick. And there will almost certainly now be a reunion with Jose Mourinho, who will almost certainly have been consulted about the decision to extend the contract to the eve of the player's 36th birthday.
The logic of not giving him a new deal always seemed flawed because Chelsea are a more potent force with him in the side than out.
It says much for his belief in himself that he has held his own in a dazzling midfield which included such talents as Eden Hazard, Oscar and Ramirez.
But, the week after Sir Alex Ferguson retired, Chelsea finally seem to have come round to the old man’s thinking. Ferguson, aware that age is more in the head than the legs, has extracted every last drop of talent out of Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes and Mourinho clearly wants to do the same with Lampard. Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay said: “Frank has been an important player for Chelsea for a long time and has played a significant part in the club’s success. We have been talking to him since the end of last year and our discussions have been entirely positive throughout.
“We are delighted we are now announcing an extension to his contract which will keep him at the club until 2014.”
Lampard’s future may be more of a bench player, but Mourinho will know better than anyone how to make that work.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal are so close to winning the Premier League, but sometimes Arsene Wenger holds them back, says Jamie Carragher
Arsenal transfer news: Tomas Rosicky and Mathieu Flamini set for showdown summer talks over future
David Beckham reveals secret of his success: I 'stayed in to watch Match of the Day' rather than go out with friends on a Saturday night
Real Madrid vs Juventus preview: Juventus know they must attack to match past European glory
Two new members of Floyd Mayweather's The Money Team blag their way into entourage to celebrate to celebrate with Justin Bieber
- 2 Top Gear: Jodie Kidd, Philip Glenister and Guy Martin 'in advanced talks' to join show
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 4 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
In defence of liberal democracy
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
Andy McSmith's Sketch: Feisty audience is the real star of an enlightening show