First thing, I am not saying this just out of the fact that me being a huge Frank James Lampard fan. Second thing, everything in this article is only my view and my perspective and I have no intentions of imposing anything on anyone.
What I think is the 36 year old Chelsea Legend should have handed over the last one year contract extension. When Frank Lampard leaves the club this summer, he will do as the finest player in club history. It is a compelling argument, and doubt the Stamford Bridge faithful will have a view on the greatest to ever wear a Chelsea shirt. When you look at the best there has ever been, you list all their attributes and everyone has to agree to the fact that even the greatest players in the game’s history had one or two flaws. Regarding Lampard, he scores goals (Highest goal scorer in club’s history), his return is extraordinary for a midfielder, he can defend, pick up a yellow for team in difficult situations, he has a character and temperament, he finds the net with either foot, can head the ball and perhaps more importantly, he is a winner and an ultimate professional on and off the park.
In addition to all this, you look at his records with the club. His longevity, the medals he won and his appearance record since he joined Chelsea, how few games he missed out of injury, particularly at his peak. With the likes of John Terry and Didier Drogba, Frank will also be considered the foundation of the side that enjoyed unprecedented success at Chelsea.
We all know how Lampard began his career at West Ham United, for whom his father Frank Lampard, Sr. had also played. He secured a place in the first team by the 1997–98 season and the following year helped the team finish 5th in the Premier League, their highest-ever Premier League placing. In 2001, he moved to Chelsea for £11 million. From his debut, he was ever-present in the Chelsea first team and made 164 consecutive Premier League appearances, a record for an outfield player. He established himself as a prolific scorer at the west London club and was a key part of the sides which won back-to-back Premier League titles in 2004–05 and 2005–06 and a domestic cup double in 2007. He signed a new contract in 2008, becoming the highest-paid Premier League footballer at that time and scored in his first Champions League Final that year. He won a second FA Cup winners’ medal in 2009, scoring the winning goal in the final. In the 2009–10 season, Lampard helped Chelsea secure their first league and FA Cup Double, and also had his most prolific season with the Blues, scoring 22 league goals and 17 league assists. In 2012, Lampard captained Chelsea to their first UEFA Champions League success and a year later to their first UEFA Europa League title.
Some recognitions of the legend are as follows. He was a three-time Chelsea Player of the Year, Lampard is the club’s all- time top goal scorer with 211 goals in all competitions. Lampard is one of seven players, and the only midfielder, to have scored 150 or more goals in the Premier League. He is second in the Premier League’s all-time assists table. In 2005, Lampard was voted FWA Footballer of the Year and was runner-up in both the FIFA World Player of the Year and the Ballon d’Or. In 2010 he received the FWA Tribute Award. He has also scored 29 goals for his nation, England. He was voted England Player of the Year for two consecutive years in 2004 and 2005. He played in Euro 2004, where he was named in the team of the tournament after scoring three goals in four games. He is England’s most prolific penalty taker with nine goals, surpassing the previous record holders, Ron Flowers and Alan Shearer. We can just keep on listing records and achievements of the Chelsea’s most humble player ever.
That kind of professionalism has been rewarded; Lampard is a credit to himself and a modern player. He will leave a massive void when he’s gone. For our club, currently, no matter how good he is, it would be a risk to agree to that because you never know with players over 30.
According to me, the team that wins titles is a blend of youth and experience. The game must embrace and not disregard the fittest and classiest older players.
But we know that club is always greater than a player. We all love and support our players. We love you Frank and our heart will always stay with you where ever you go. This is your home, we are your people. You can always come back. We will honour your return. Your contribution to the club’s history and its success for more than a decade at Stamford Bridge has been nothing short of priceless. You are our legend, our hero. Proud to be a #Lampardist.