Major League Soccer got what they wanted when Englishman Frank Lampard signed with new club New York City FC to help fill their Designated Player wishes this year.
However, since NYCFC doesn’t start until the 2015 season, the 36-year-old will look to keep up his fitness and playing level, on loan to Manchester City, as the Sky Blues prepare to face Manchester City in a colossal Premier League contest this weekend.
City boss Manuel Pelligrini didn’t elaborate very much regarding the extent of which Lampard will feature in this competition.
“Frank is part of our squad and [on Saturday] I will give the squad list for that game. For sure he will be involved in that game. He is part of the squad. I don’t think it is a difficult situation for him,” he said, via TeamTalk.com.
Whether or not Lampard performs, the history that he has with the team, playing 13 years of his career at Stamford Bridge, will still linger when the two sides battle each other. And Pellegrini boiled his departure from Chelsea to a simple fact: the club didn’t require the veteran’s services anymore.
“I think Frank didn’t continue at Chelsea because they didn’t want him, not because he wanted to come here to Manchester City. He can’t continue playing in the team he played his whole life, but he has all the rights to continue playing football. He arrived here and we are very happy with him.”
Meanwhile, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho didn’t view Lampard’s departure in the same way, stating he was “not expecting” the longtime midfielder to make an exit.
“It’s football. If you’d said that four or five years ago, I would have said it was strange. Even a few months ago, when he signed for the New York team, I was not expecting this. But it was his decision. When he left for New York, I thought he was going there. But it’s his life, his decision, and he has my respect for that.”