What’s The Deal With Lampard At Chelsea?

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Ironically, with a bit of a lull on the subject of Frank Lampard’s possible transfer to Inter Milan, I’d just started writing a piece on our ‘committed’ midfielder when news started to break he’d signed a four year contract with the Italian club. According to the source – highly regarded magazine France Football – Lampard will earn an annual salary of £5.8million when he teams up with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho. I’m sure the matter of how much truth there is in this story will become clearer in the not too distant future (and his agent has already rubbished the reports), but I for one wouldn’t be at all surprised to see it happen.

Lampard’s contract has been a bone of contention for so long it seemed inevitable (to some) that his failure to sign last summer would see him seeking a move elsewhere. According to reports in the press, the stalling point in the contract talks seemed to be around the length of a proposed deal, with Chelsea offering a 2-year extension to his current deal and Lampard asking for an extra 4 years. Now whilst I’m sure the vast majority of supporters would suggest Chelsea give Lampard what he wants, I’d have to agree with the club on this one. Why would any club – never mind a club who’ve already been caught out giving the ageing Shevchenko a 5-year deal – offer a player Lampard’s age a deal that’d see him earning a ridiculous amount of money until the ripe old age of 37?

Despite the offer of £135,000 a week for another couple of years, putting him on a par with John Terry, Lampard is apparently adamant that as one of the fittest players in the Premier League, his stamina should be sufficient argument for a lengthy deal – although last seasons injuries have probably given him less to bargain with on that point. And if you look at the fact that Ballack was only given a 3-year contract when he joined at the age of 29, Lampard’s arguments fall down even further. The German midfielder, clearly in better form than Chelsea have ever seen him, only has a year left on his contract himself and yet doesn’t seem to be holding a gun to the club’s head himself.

Now whilst I would always acknowledge the huge contribution Lampard has made to Chelsea, not least of all the 20 plus goals he’s provided for the past 3 seasons, the fact that he’s dragged this contract saga out for two years is something that’s seen me question his commitment on several occasions over the past 12 months. And whilst the vast majority of supporters would apparently give their right arm in exchange for him staying, that’s a standpoint I can’t agree with.

I mean, take another hot topic right now – the Ronaldo stories. There’s been plenty said about how much of a mercenary he is stringing United along by not coming out and making his intentions clear but what I can’t see is how Lampard’s any better. In fact, given that Frank’s actually stated how much he loves Chelsea and wants to see out his career with us – repeatedly (whilst kissing the badge) – he still didn’t get round to actually proving it by signing a new contract, so surely that’s worse? At least Ronaldo signed a new contract for United so if he does go, it’ll be a huge financial gain for United which is more than can be said for the reported 9million euros we’ll have got for Frank. At the end of the day, we always knew and more importantly, Lampard always knew that if he left his contract until this point, Chelsea would lose millions in the event of his departure. I just fail to see how any supporter can see that as a sign of a player who really cares about his club or finds it acceptable.

And whilst I repeat that I’d never underestimate how much of a contribution Lampard has made at Chelsea, I’m afraid I’ve got to the point where I totally agree with Mikel on this. If Lampard goes, he goes and we’ll move on without him.

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12 Responses

  1. yes i agree with the last paragraph.

    it simply shows that these players dont care about the club,
    there is only 1 player in the world that i know that cares for his club and that player is Paolo Maldini.

  2. I agree with what you said for most parts. But I feel Lampard has given his 100% whenever he played. He is a Chelsea symbol, an Icon. Lampard the player is replaceable, Lampard the man is irreplaceable.

  3. after all the support he got from the death of his mother by the management at chelsea does he think that he would have got that type of support at inter milan.they would have said oh well.life goes on.and now he wants to go.its money.the greedy b*****d.let him go.
    we all despaired when gianfranco went.however,we survived.in fact we got stronger.so let him go.he will be crying when either ac or juventus win all the trophies in italy and we win a lot next season

  4. The club might move on if he goes, but I, personally, will never ever move on if he goes to Inter. I just can’t picture Chelsea without him, and him without Chelsea. He’s simply irreplaceable.
    My gut tells me after what happened to him with the death of his Mum, he will stay and end his career at Chelsea. I’m surely hoping that that will happen.

  5. oh well he’s fat anyway.

  6. You are 100% correct. I think Lampard is brilliant as a man but football wise he is good but a bit overated. Ballack always play better without lampad. I hope we bring in another quality midfielder. My dream line up next is.

    …………………………..Cech……………………………………..

    Bosingwa………Terry…………Carvalho…………A Cole

    Essien

    Deco/Van dar vaart/Asharvin Ballack

    J Cole …………………Drogba…………………Ronaldinho

    Chelsea for LIFE

  7. Have to go along with what you say if it is true that he has signed.

    I think Lampard (and I don’t blame him) is looking for a new challenge and has always wanted to test himself in another league. He now has the chance with the cushion of playing for a manager that knows him and can get the best out of him.

    I can also see the club’s reluctance to award a 4 year contract after being burnt with Sheva.

    I must admit I am sad that for me has has slightly tarnished his legend status as the club is now going to get further flak from the fans and I had enough of that last year and it just feeds the media. I want to move on and see us talked about for our football not our supposedly bad treatement of coach/player/employee/the world.

  8. Rob – I can’t see how Lampard would be looking for a new challenge at his age, this is about money and a longer contract than he could tie Chelsea to imo.

  9. I think he will stay. He loves the club and the fans. If he goes, like you said, Scolari and co will move on and Chelsea will move on…

  10. Amnos….Somehow I don t think Joe Cole will feature in Scolari s thinking, I don t think Lampard will stay, nor Drogba,and I don t think buying off Abramovich’s 2002 World Cup fantasy football team sheet will yield the quality of football you guys will forever crave(should have learnt that with Shev). Nothing about Abo and his cronies values(or lack of them) will change the way Chelsea behave as a Club. If I were a Chelsea fan with any integrity I would do what real ManU and Wimbledon fans did and set up your own club starting from scratch , and go out and enjoy yourselves like you did in the old days. Call it Real Chelsea.
    As Dein has probably correctly pointed out I think Scolari is capable of finding and moulding a new generation of top Brazilian and Portuguese talent, but unfortunately Abo won t give him the time and, like any 3rd choice toy of the obscenely rich, he’ll be thrown out the pram for either Ancellotti or Hiddink.

  11. Samir.. I think you re being a bit unfair on John Terry.

  12. […] saw the first of many badge kisses from Frank Lampard in 2003, who later went on to hold his club to ransom to get the £130,000 a week salary he […]

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