Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard 'in talks' with Chinese club Guizhou Renhe
Chinese club Guizhou Renhe have opened talks with Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard, according to reports.
Renhe's deputy board chairman Yang Xiayou was quoted in reports published today saying the club were in contact with Lampard but that no deal had been done. It followed reports in which the club's chairman Dai Yongge had claimed Lampard would join them as captain in January.
Lampard's agent declined to comment on speculation about the midfielder's future when contacted by Press Association Sport, and Blues boss Roberto Di Matteo dismissed the link to Renhe when the subject was raised in a press conference following Chelsea's Barclays Premier League match against Liverpool yesterday.
According to reports, Chelsea are not prepared to offer more than a one-year extension to Lampard, who could secure a lucrative payday to finish his career elsewhere.
Former Stamford Bridge team-mates Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka did just that when they joined Shanghai Shenhua this year on contracts said to earn them in excess of £250,000 a week.
Lampard has been linked with a move to China since March, while he has been touted for even longer as a big-name replacement for David Beckham in Major League Soccer.
Renhe, who are based in China's south-western province of Guizhou, qualified for the AFC Champions League for the first time last season following a fourth-place finish in the Super League.
Lampard, who realised his ambition to win the Champions League in Europe last season when he captained Chelsea to their Munich triumph, has repeatedly expressed his desire to stay at Stamford Bridge.
But he has also admitted to concerns about the lack of contact from the club over a new deal in recent months.
He has not played for the Blues since aggravating a calf injury in their Champions League defeat at Shakhtar Donetsk almost three weeks ago and is a doubt for their potential make-or-break Group E showdown at Juventus next week.
Latest in Sport
New day (slowly) rising – As Brasileirão gets underway, Brazilian football stumbles, rather than leaps into the future
The average Serie A crowd last year was 13,000 - comparable to Australia’s A-League.
by James Young
24 May 2013 04:31 PM
Monaco is a street circuit where driver ability is more important than anywhere else and if we take ...
by Gareth Purnell
24 May 2013 02:00 AM
Three weeks ago as I drove off the Eurostar, I remember thinking what a very long time it was until ...
by Martin Ayres
23 May 2013 05:29 PM
- 1 What, let gays get married? We must be bonkers
- 2 'Something passed underneath us, quite close': Airbus A320 has close encounter with UFO
- 3 Rocky Horror star Tim Curry 'suffers major stroke'
- 4 Lord of the Sings: Sir Christopher Lee, 91, to release heavy metal album
- 5 Exclusive: Woolwich killings suspect Michael Adebolajo was inspired by cleric banned from UK after urging followers to behead enemies of Islam
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.