Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that both Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole were offered new contracts before they were released.

Two old guards of Chelsea, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole, left Chelsea this summer for free and initial reports suggested that the London club were keen to retain them. But manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that both the players were offered new contract before they left the club.

Ashley Cole was the first to leave the club this summer as the left back struggled to get into the first team last season. The former Arsenal left back, who joined the club in 2006, made only 15 starts in the league as Mourinho shifted Cesar Azpilicueta to the left side of the defence and fielded Branislav Ivanovic as the right back. Cole also struggled with his fitness, which didn’t help his cause.

The 33-year-old won one league title, four FA Cups, a League Cup, a Champions League and an Europa League title during his stint at the club. He opted to join AS Roma this summer as Chelsea signed Felipe Luis from Atletico Madrid as his replacement.

Frank Lampard also followed Cole’s exit from Stamford Bridge. The 36-year-old, who is the highest scorer in Chelsea’s history, joined the London club in 2001 and attained legendary status among the fans. But the midfielder joined MLS club New York City in the summer after his contract expired and has now completed a move back to Manchester City on a six-month loan deal, in order to maintain his fitness before the MLS season starts.

Although initial reports suggested that both Cole and Lampard were shown the exit door this summer, Jose Mourinho has revealed that both the players were offered new contract before the left.

“They were [offered new deals]

“We were in this process until the end, but you arrive into a moment [where you ask] what’s the best for the team? What’s the best for the other players? What’s the best for them?

“And it depends also on their mentality.

“Lampard and Ashley, they will be until the last day players to compete, to play every game, to be involved.

“I think they are happier – in spite of their love for Chelsea – in this new situation for them.

“The best way for competitive people like them to be happy, to enjoy the last part of their career, is to go and play.” – The Chelsea manager said.