Terry urged to persaude Chelsea to keep Lampard
John Terry was today urged by hundreds of Chelsea fans to try to talk Roman Abramovich into giving Frank Lampard a new contract after revealing his own devastation at his team-mate’s impending departure.
Blues captain Terry was bombarded with messages from worried supporters following a posting on his Instagram account in which he also urged the club to retire Lampard’s jersey once the midfielder leaves Stamford Bridge.
With no sign of Chelsea offering Lampard a new deal, that is currently set to be this summer, a state of affairs which has clearly upset his team-mate of almost 12 years.
This morning saw Terry post a picture on his Instagram account of him and Lampard holding the FA Cup, accompanied by the comment: “Devastated is an understatement. We should retire the number 8 shirt in honour of Lamps. #theheartbeat #hero #legend #hero #goalmachine #friend #ktbffh (keep the blue flag flying high) #cfc #chelsea.”
The posting was later removed, with Terry adding another picture of Lampard, this time holding the Champions League trophy.
It was accompanied by a comment explaining he had been reacting to quotes attributed to Lampard’s agent, Steve Kutner, in the Italian media in which he reportedly said the midfielder would definitely be leaving Stamford Bridge this summer.
Kutner has since denied giving any such interview.
Terry wrote: “I have seen franks agents quotes on sky yesterday. That’s all I’m going on nothing more.”
However, that failed to stem the tide of fan response, which focused mainly on asking Terry to use his position to convince Chelsea owner Abramovich and the board to think again.
But barring a dramatic U-turn by Chelsea, Lampard will have to find himself a new club next season and he is now free to sign a pre-contract with a foreign team at any time.
He has most recently been linked with a move to Italy, with either Lazio or Inter Milan, while there have been constant rumours of a switch to Major League Soccer or a club in Asia.
Lampard last month appeared resigned to leaving Chelsea, saying: “Maybe things don’t last forever.”
The club’s stance has upset and baffled many supporters, for whom Lampard is one of the greatest players ever to pull on the jersey.
Recent matches have seen them urge the board to “Sign him up”, the 34-year-old responding by scoring three times in his last four games.
Those goals have taken him to within one of Kerry Dixon on the club’s all-time list, with 192 in total, 10 adrift of record scorer Bobby Tambling.
Lampard is also closing in on third place on Chelsea’s list of highest appearance makers.
He is one of the most successful players in the Blues’ history, having captained the side to Champions League glory last season, as well as winning three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and two League Cups.
He did endure a injury-hit 2012 but ended the year in prime form.
Interim manager Rafael Benitez reiterated today that Terry was reacting to quotes that had since been called into question.
He added of Lampard: “It’s the same situation that we had before.
“He’s a player that is fully committed, he’s under contract, he’s working hard in every training session, every game, and we will try to bring the best from him. That’s it.”
A report today suggested Lampard had offered to take a substantial pay cut to secure a new deal but a Chelsea source said tonight: “The subject of a pay cut has neither been raised nor discussed in any of the recent conversations between the club and the the player, or his agent.”