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Redknapp opens the door to Lampard switch

ESPN staff
June 3, 2014 « Van Gaal stands by tough stance | Milner laughs at 'boring' tag »
Frank Lampard's Chelsea career ends

Chelsea could live to regret allowing Frank Lampard to leave Stamford Bridge after 13 years and a club-record 211 goals, according to Harry Redknapp.

Lampard confirmed on Monday evening that he will quit the club this summer, with the 35-year-old widely tipped to join Sheikh Mansour's new Major League Soccer franchise New York City FC.

He also has the possibility of a short-term move to newly-promoted Queens Park Rangers, with the MLS season not starting until next year and his uncle, Redknapp, admitting an interest.

Chelsea in for Fabregas

Barcelona are said to have made Cesc Fabregas available © AP
  • Jose Mourinho is weighing up a move for Barcelona's Cesc Fabregas after Frank Lampard announced he is leaving Chelsea. Sources have told ESPN that the club, who have also been linked with a move for Atletico Madrid's Koke, are seriously considering a deal for the £30 million-rated midfielder.
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Redknapp, the QPR manager, said: "If he goes to New York, and their season does not start until March, you never know... if he's got six months to fill, maybe he fancies a game at QPR.

"He is easily good enough to do another year at Chelsea, but I don't think Frank would be happy if he wasn't playing regularly because he is not used to that.

"If I was Chelsea manager, I would take him back for another year, absolutely. He's still worth his weight in gold around the place and Roy Hodgson feels the same as far as England are concerned.

"You need good characters around, whether it's a football club or the England dressing room. His set piece delivery is still the best in the business."

Lampard , who signed for Chelsea from West Ham, won 11 major trophies during his 13 years at Stamford Bridge, making 648 club appearances and becoming the club's all-time leading goalscorer.

Redknapp feels Lampard may have decided to chase a new challenge while he is still just fresh enough to offer a major impact at a new club.

"Maybe if he's going to go, now's the time,'' Redknapp said. "I'm sure he'll be focused on the World Cup now - he won't be thinking about much else.

"It could be exciting to go to New York, though - a new project over there - but he'll be successful in whatever he wants to do.

"The only person Frank would ask for advice is his dad, but he'll know, he's a very shrewd boy. He's got his girlfriend as well, and they might fancy New York for a couple of years."

Redknapp, who spent three years at the Seattle Sounders between 1976 and 1979, believes MLS still has some way to go to rival the calibre of stars that made the move some 40 years ago.

"I went out to Seattle and it's a great time, a fantastic experience,'' he said. "Thierry Henry's out there now and Jermain Defoe, but in the 1970s there were much better players out there!

"Seriously, though, you had Franz Beckenbauer, Johan Cruyff, Gerd Muller, Pele and Carlos Alberto. Most of that great Dutch team of the 1970s went out there, and even Bobby Moore and George Best at points too. It was far more star-studded then, but it has moved on a level again recently.''

Spain striker David Villa, 32, was confirmed as the New York franchise's first-ever player on Monday.

Frank Lampard won 11 major trophies as a Chelsea player © PA Photos
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