Cardiff v Chelsea: Frank Lampard could miss Chelsea swansong as midfielder laid up in bed with illness

Jose Mourinho reveals Lampard is unlikely to be in a fit state to 'travel of play' Sunday's fixture the last before his contract expires

Frank Lampard may have already played his final match for Chelsea after Jose Mourinho revealed the midfielder is a major doubt for Sunday's Barclays Premier League finale at Cardiff.

Lampard, who is 36 in June, is out of contract at the end of the campaign alongside captain John Terry and Ashley Cole, a trio who have been mainstays at Chelsea for eight years and more.

"Frank Lampard is ill, he is in bed," Mourinho said.

FOLLOW ALL TODAY'S PREMIER LEAGUE ACTION WITH OUR LIVE BLOG HERE

"If he is in bed on Friday, I don't think on Saturday he is coming in a condition to travel or to play."

Lampard is Chelsea's record goalscorer, with 209 goals in 646 appearances since his 2001 move from West Ham.

Asked to reflect on Lampard's distinguished career at Stamford Bridge, Mourinho added: "Maybe in a few years he will have a statue where Peter Osgood is, by his side. He's one of the biggest players (in the history) of this club."

Terry is also doubtful - with "a little thing" picked up on Thursday - but has begun negotiations over a possible new contract and his form this season suggests the Blues would like to keep the captain.

 

England left-back Cole appears on the verge of an exit after being a peripheral figure this term.

Mourinho, who will provide a report to the Chelsea hierarchy at the end of the campaign, was unable to provide an update on the futures of the trio.

Asked if their Chelsea careers would end at the season's conclusion, Mourinho said: "I don't know. But I don't think so. The club knows my opinion. The players know my opinion too."

Despite finishing the season without silverware - Chelsea's first trophyless campaign since 2010-11 - Mourinho reflected on a "positive" return.

Other managers have paid with their jobs in similar circumstances under notoriously hard-to-please owner Roman Abramovich, but the Portuguese is likely to remain after guiding Chelsea back into title contention for much of the campaign, after the Blues finished 25 points off the pace in 2012 and 14 adrift last term.

"By the competitive aspect I think it was an evolution," Mourinho said.

"Some of the players had for the first time that experience of fighting for the title, until it was not possible, and fighting for the Champions League, playing Champions League knockout phase, quarter-finals, semi-finals.

"This is not the kind of season that Chelsea celebrates, because this is Chelsea's nature and my nature.

"We are not jumping because in such a difficult Premier League we finished third and qualified to the Champions League group phase without play-offs.

"In this moment we are thinking about next season. We are turning our focus not to the World Cup but to preparations for next season."

Mourinho has often spoken of transition since returning to Stamford Bridge and he will have decisions to make this summer.

As well as the futures of Terry, Lampard and Cole, Chelsea and Mourinho have other things to ponder.

What to do with his goalkeepers, Petr Cech and Thibaut Courtois, who has excelled on loan at Atletico Madrid?

What to do with Romelu Lukaku, who has scored 15 times on loan at Everton?

Mourinho has often spoken of the travails of his strikers - Samuel Eto'o, Fernando Torres and Demba Ba - and his desire to recruit a prolific goalscorer, with Atletico's Diego Costa widely linked.

Eto'o, who has scored 12 goals this term, all at home, is out of contract at the end of the season and may also have played his final game for Chelsea as he suffered an injury in training on Friday after a recent knee problem.

Mourinho and Chelsea have been working on the recruitment of a striker for some time.

"We were preparing the long-term future and not just an immediate solution to try to help us for the rest of the season," Mourinho said.

"In the same way we bought two players in January and they were not eligible to play in the Champions League (Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah) and we said 'no problem' because we are preparing the team for the long term and not just for the immediate.

"It is normal that we are going to bring a striker (in) now. It's normal. It's normal that we want to improve.

"We have good strikers, we have good players, we are not in a desperate situation.

"But it's the normal evolution of the team. Every team wants to get the summer transfer window to improve and one area we want to improve - and we've made it very clear since December, January - that it's the striker position.

"We have three strikers in this moment. Normally one is coming, normally one is leaving. Calm, natural and logical."

PA

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Laura Trott with her gold
Commonwealth Games
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman
film
News
Bryan had a bracelet given to him by his late father stolen during the raid
people
Sport
France striker Loic Remy
sportThe QPR striker flew to Boston earlier in the week to complete deal
Extras
indybestSpice up your knife with our selection of delicious toppings
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried