Top 5 Chelsea Goals: The Frank Lampard Edition
A consummate professional, Lampard has ingratiated himself with the West London club over the past 13 seasons, easily finding a place in the Pantheon of both Chelsea and Premier League greats.
Chelsea's all-time leading goalscorer with 208 (not out), Lampard has a magnificent assemblage of stunning finishes. Some are technically brilliant, some are poignant and others...a combination of both.
Whittling down 208 to a "top five" is difficult, as more than a few wonder goals have been left out.
This list is based on the right mix of impeccable quality and importance to one's club.
Honourable Mention: Bayern Munich, 2012
It's interesting how penalty shootout goals don't count toward one's goal record—they should.
You'd be hard pressed not to mention Frank Lampard's conversion in the 2012 Champions League Final in his "top five," but as they don't really count: "Honourable Mention" it is.
Juan Mata went first in the shootout and was saved by Bayern Munich's mammoth goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
David Luiz went second and let go of a screamer, but the Germans had hit all three of their spot kicks to that point.
Up stepped Lampard.
Would he have missed, the next penalty converted by Munich would have sealed the contest—but was there ever any doubt?
As cool as you like, as he's done his whole career (except for this one time with Paolo Di Canio), Lampard powered his penalty past Neuer. From thereon the shootout took a blue persuasion and Chelsea's European glory was eventually sealed by Didier Drogba.
5. Everton, May 2009
Didier Drogba was considered the "big man for the big occasion," but his equaliser in the 2009 FA Cup Final wasn't enough for the silverware.
Besting Everton's Tim Howard from about 24 yards, Frank Lampard gave a showcase in just how expert his technique can be.
Showing off his "weaker" left foot, Lampard sealed a 2-1 result in Chelsea's favor, earning the Blues their fifth FA Cup success.
4. Bolton, April 2005
What can a Russian billionaire and a Portuguese manager do for you?
If you check your calendar and it says 2005, winning the Premier League might be first on the list.
After spending big money in the summer of 2004—namely Didier Drogba (£24 million), Ricardo Carvalho (£20 million), Paulo Ferreira (£13.2 million) and Arjen Robben (£12 million)—the pressure was on the Blues to win, and win immediately.
Needing all three points to secure their first top flight championship in 50 years, Frank Lampard gave Chelsea two goals against Bolton Wanderers, sealing the Premier League crown and commencing an era of dominance for the West Londoners.
3. Bayern Munich, April 2005
Frank Lampard's goal versus Bayern Munich in the 2004-05 Champions League quarter-finals was in a word: "breathtaking."
The ball from Claude Makelele was a touch too high, but no issue for Lampard. He chested the ball down and on the half volley struck a shot past three-time IFFHS World's Best Goalkeeper Oliver Kahn.
Lampard's effort gave the Blues a 3-1 lead and the first leg ended 4-2.
Nonetheless, words can often ruin the unexplainable—just watch the goal again. What class!
2. Barcelona, October 2006
Were this list based solely on skill, this would be No. 1.
You could watch the goal on a loop and still not completely understand how it happened. The angle is so acute—only the bravest would think to try it, let alone attempt it.
Add in the component of visiting Barcelona's Camp Nou and this Frank Lampard effort becomes all the more impressive.
1. Aston Villa, May 2013
Frank Lampard told the BBC last year his goals against Bolton were the favourites of his Premier League career. However, for sheer historical importance, Lampard's 203rd goal—setting Chelsea's all-time record—was his crowning achievement.
The goal was classic Lampard: marauding from midfield, linking play, making his trademark run into the box and finishing with a tap in. All hallmarks of the Chelsea legend, and each was employed scoring his record-breaking effort.
Metro reported in 2009 Lampard has the IQ of a genius. It's "well above 150," Chelsea's former medical director Bryan English was credited with saying.
To Stamford Bridge's benefit, it seems every IQ point has been programmed to master the art of scoring goals—something Blues' supporters won't soon forget.
It's certainly something the Chelsea record books won't forget, as Lampard's name is rife throughout.
Comments Section: Which One Ya Got?
There are so many goals from which to choose, and so many ways to rank them. What are your thoughts?
Which of Frank Lampard's goals is your favourite? Which should have made the list?
Where does Lampard rank on the list of all-time Chelsea greats?
Should Lampard be given a one-year extension or possibly a front-office/management position?