Chelsea legend Frank Lampard, who is currently preparing for his Major League Soccer debut for New York City, has expressed regret because of the hullabaloo caused by his loan spell at Manchester City.
Lampard signed a two-year deal with New York City as a free agent at the end of the 2013-14 season, after a 13-year spell at Chelsea. However, Manchester City, New York City’s parent club, announced that Lampard would sign a loan deal with the Premier League side, which would keep him at the club till January 2015.
But in December 2014, it was announced that Lampard’s stay would be extended till the end of the Premier League, making him miss the start of the MLS season, which did not go down well with the New York City fans. The fans accused the club of using the player for promotional purposes while MLS commissioner Don Garber was accused of poor leadership.
In January 2015, Manchester City admitted that Lampard had never signed a 2-year contract with New York City. He instead had signed a “non-binding” contract to join the team. On the same day Lampard confirmed that he would join New York City at the end of the Premier League 2014-15 season, even though Manuel Pellegrini had hinted earlier that Lampard could extend his stay at Manchester City to 2 years after the initial season-long loan.
Due to this saga, around 300 season ticket holders asked for refunds while the crowd chanted “Where’s Frank Lampard?” during the MLS SuperDraft 2015.
The 37-year-old midfielder, who finally joined up with his New York City teammates earlier this month, said:
“I was asked from the top to stay on in Manchester, so it wasn’t an easy position for me to be in. I’m not trying to wash my hands of it because I am a man and I make my decisions, but it kind of felt right at the time to carry on playing. The situation happened as it did and I kind of sat there and, yeah, when you stay on and the club really wanted me to stay on, and I thought I’d play more matches, obviously. It didn’t work out that way. I looked at New York and I knew that’s what I signed up for. It was a strange feeling.”
Source – Dailymail
Lampard also told reporters at the Big Apple that he might train somewhere to keep himself fit after the MLS season, but he certainly won’t play at any club, and considers his time at the Premier League and European football to be over.
Lampard will feature alongside the likes of David Villa and Andre Pirlo, in New York City Football Club, whose next game is against Toronto on July 12, although it is unlikely that Lampard will feature before their game against New England on July 19.
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Edited By: Karan Dubey
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