Sport Soccer

Monday 19 February 2018

Chelsea’s Frank Lampard will not be joining Manchester United: Alex Ferguson

ALEX Ferguson has dismissed suggestions Manchester United will attempt to sign Frank Lampard during the January transfer window. Reports this morning claimed Ferguson would try to lure the 33-year-old Chelsea midfielder to Old Trafford to help avert an injury crisis that has already seen Nemanja Vidic, Darren Fletcher, Tom Cleverley, Ashley Young, Chris Smalling, Jonny Evans, Fabio Da Silva and Michael Owen sidelined.

It has been rumoured that Lampard is unsettled at Chelsea, with new manager Andre Villas-Boas often using him as an impact player off the bench.

The England international has 18 months left on his contract at Stamford Bridge, where he has played since 2001 after joining for £11 million from West Ham.

However, when asked if claims United would try to sign him were true, Ferguson replied: "Do you really think Chelsea would sell to United in January?

"There's no foundation in that. Chelsea want to do something in the second half of the season so they want to keep their best players."

Ferguson reiterated that he is not currently planning to add to his squad in January as he does not believe he will be able to land the players he wants.

"What can you get in January?" he said. "I've said this many times now. The players we'd like we can't get. If the alternative is to sign a second-rate player, we don't want to do that.

"Our injuries have led to fans wanting us to sign someone, but I don't want to sign a player who won't get a game when everyone's fit because he's not good enough."

Ferguson has also questioned the need for peace talks ahead of United's Premier League encounter with Liverpool at Old Trafford on Feb 11.

Relations between the two clubs have been soured since the racism row between Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra exploded when the two sides last met in October.

Further bad blood was spilled as Liverpool attempted to defend their striker, with Liverpool questioning why Suarez's word was being ignored in favour of Evra.

Subsequently, Suarez was found guilty of making racist comments by an independent disciplinary commission and banned for eight matches.

Yet even in accepting the punishment earlier this week, Liverpool - and Suarez - have avoided any suggestion of an apology to Evra.

United have said nothing on the entire matter, other than questioning the need for Liverpool's statements in support of the Uruguayan prior to the disciplinary hearing.

Privately they have been irritated by Liverpool's stance, though, and Ferguson has cooled talk of discussions between the two clubs, reports of which emerged this morning, before they meet again, by which time Suarez will be available.

"It is nice of them to do it through the press," said Ferguson. "You would have thought they would come to Manchester United first.

"I do not see why there is any need for it. But I have nothing to say about it."

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