Friday 20 April 2018

Frank Lampard could have come back to Chelsea to 'do whatever he wants' - Jose Mourinho

Frank Lampard in blue
Frank Lampard in blue

Simon Rice

Jose Mourinho has said he expected Frank Lampard to move to the MLS when he left Chelsea and then in a couple of years return to Stamford Bridge to do "whatever he wants".

But rather that head to the United States, Lampard instead joined Premier League title rivals Manchester City.

The confusing switch to the Etihad came after Chelsea and Lampard failed to renew their vows. The free-agent then 'signed' a pre-contract with MLS side New York City FC, but with the MLS season not starting until March, Lampard joined their sister team Manchester City.

Lampard was expected to end his association with Manuel Pellegrini's team at the end of 2014 but instead agreed a new deal with Manchester City that keeps him at the club until the end of the season. When Lampard agreed the new deal it emerged that he was not on loan from New York City FC - as most had thought - but was actually a fully-fledged Manchester City player.

"We let him go for different reasons," explained Mourinho during an eventful appearance on Sky Sports' Goals on Sunday.

"First of all I think the motivation Frank has to play this role at Man City wouldn't be the same for the same role at Chelsea. That's my personal opinion.

"Secondly, we opened the door for him to choose his future, and we thought he was going to the United States. We thought in a couple of years he would come back to Chelsea to do whatever he wants - first-team coach, assistant manager, academy director...we would have made a new department for him to do anything because what he represents for Chelsea for more than a decade was something amazing.

"We were surprised he goes to Man City but when he's a free agent he does what he wants with his career and the last thing I would do is criticise him."

Independent News Service

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