Chelsea and England midfielder Frank Lampard says he is mentally prepared to hang up his boots, but would love to carry on for another two-three years.
Lampard, who is currently preparing for the World Cup with England, is unsure if his footballing career lies beyond the tournament and has claimed that he has been mentally preparing himself for retirement ever since he turned 30.
The midfielder has enjoyed a highly successful 13 years with the Blues. Lampard has won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two League Cups, and a Europa League and Champions League winner medal apiece.
The 35 year old’s existing contract runs out at the end of June and the club did not extend his contract and surprisingly published his name alongside the likes of Samuel Eto’o as those players who would be departing the club. However, it was reported that the England midfielder was in talks over a new one-year deal to keep him in Jose Mourinho’s squad for another season. And even though neither parties were rushing talks, it was reported that Chelsea were confident that Lampard would be a Chelsea player when the new season kicked off at the end of August.
But Lampard’s statements now suggest that he is not sure if he would be at Stamford Bridge next season, or even be playing football at all.
“I don’t know if I’ll be at Chelsea next season,” the 35 year old said
“I’d like to carry on for two or three more years but it would be good to end on a high. So, if that means it all ends tomorrow, I wouldn’t have any regrets. You know your shelf-life, so I started to mentally prepare when I hit 30. I’ve been doing this for a long time, so there’s a part of me that’s looking forward to the future.”
Lampard has been linked with a move to newly promoted club Queens Park Rangers but manager Harry Redknapp recently refuted any such suggestions.
“I would think there’s absolutely no chance of getting Frank. He’s at Chelsea.I’d be very surprised if Chelsea don’t keep him anyway – he’s just been such a fantastic player”, said the QPR boss
Meanwhile England captain Steven Gerrard insisted in England’s pre- Peru (friendly) press conference that he could partner up Lampard in the midfield. The pair have often received criticism of not sharing a good midfield chemistry as the two have very similar playing styles. But Gerrard thinks otherwise.
“Gerrard and Lampard, is no-one bored of that one yet? I agree with Roy and I have said it many times on record that good players can play together and good players need to be able to adapt and take on a manager’s tactics”, said the England captain
“We don’t want a team of individuals who want do it alone. The only way we are going to be successful as a team is if the combinations as a team work and we take on the manager’s tactics.”