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Frank Lampard Will Reportedly Leave Chelsea at Season's End

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 02:  Frank Lampard of Chelsea reacts after his goal is disallowed for offside during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Queens Park Rangers at Stamford Bridge on January 2, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images
Ethan GrantAnalyst IJanuary 3, 2013

The transfer window has apparently chewed up Frank Lampard and is prepared to spit him out in another uniform, another city and for another club come summer 2013.

UPDATE: Thursday, January 3 at 5:53 p.m. ET

According to an ESPN report, it appears Lampard's agent is denying any involvement in earlier reports that suggested his client would be jumping ship this summer.

Steve Kutner, his agent, was quoted as saying this when it comes to Lampard future with the Blues, which is in direct contradiction to the earlier report by Sky Sports regarding his future:

“At this moment, Lampard is exclusively thinking about the present, in other words Chelsea. As for the future, the only certainty is that he will change team at the end of the season."

Kutner is now denying that he's had any contact at all with news outlets that would report that Lampard is already thinking about his next playing stop.

However, the agent told BBC 5live radio station that he "hasn't spoken to anybody about Lampard's future and hasn't given any interview about it."

It appears Chelsea's still home for Lampard, and if he is thinking about leaving, that information is going to be kept mum until the club and the midfielder agree in their own time. Don't count out the Blues for his services just yet.

---End of Update---

 

According to a report by Sky Sports News on Twitter, the 34-year-old midfielder is prepared to walk at the end of his contractual obligation to the Blues:

Frank Lampard's agent has claimed the midfielder is "certain" to leave Chelsea at the end of the season. #SSN

— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 3, 2013

This doesn't come as much of a surprise to Chelsea faithful, as the club made it clear in the past few weeks that Lampard wasn't a priority when it came to retaining certain players and finding new ones, according to BBC.

They added salt to the wound by signing Newcastle striker Demba Ba as soon as the window was available, and at the same time other clubs have been in hot pursuit of one of the most decorated, if not the most, in club history.

Lampard has 192 career goals for the Blues, including six in 12 games with the team this season. His penchant for scoring has been rare for others that play the position, but Lampard has been able to provide a punch from the position for well over a decade.

However, signs of age and injury have started to creep in, which is one of the main reasons it seems Chelsea is content to let him leave at the end of his current wages.

The LA Galaxy, Inter Milan and other Premier League clubs have been linked to the midfielder in recent days, and it appears the Americans are prepared to offer Lampard the same salary that David Beckham received to try and alleviate some of the pains of his retirement (according to The Sun).

Chelsea has achieved some of its greatest success with Lampard manning the middle, and could always decide that his loyalty and class are too great to pass up. But for now, it appears Lampard is playing hardball, a strategy that might lead to the end of his time with the club that made him a star.

 

Ethan Grant is a featured columnist for B/R's Breaking News Team. Check him out on Twitter, and stay with Soccer from Bleacher Report for all things transfer.


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