Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By DAN KARELL
Frank Lampard is now a Manchester City player, at least for the next few months.
Man City confirmed on Wednesday morning that they’ve signed the England international on loan from New York City FC, where he recently signed as the club’s second Designated Player. With NYC FC not starting MLS play until 2015, Lampard has joined Man City likely until the January transfer window, where he’ll move to the U.S. and join up with NYC FC for preseason training.
According to Man City’s press release, Lampard is available for selection for all of Man City’s domestic and European matches, and he has been given the number 18. Lampard trained with his new Man City teammates for the first time on Wednesday after spending the last two weeks in New York.
“Joining up with Manchester City is a fantastic opportunity for me to continue to train and play at the top level and make sure I am in top condition for New York City (FC),” Lampard said in a press release. “It has been an amazing few days for me since the unveiling in Brooklyn and everyone connected with both clubs has been fantastic to me. This is a new chapter of my career and I’m really excited about the experience.
“I met Manuel and some of the players in New York and I’m looking forward to getting into training and making a contribution for Manchester City ahead of my move over to New York.”
The 36-year-old midfielder was out of contract at the end of this past season and decided to leave Chelsea after 13 years with the club. Lampard played just once for England at the disappointing 2014 World Cup, in their scoreless draw with Costa Rica.
After the tournament, Lampard weighed his options, which included offers from England, elsewhere in Europe, and across the globe, before settling on NYC FC.
“This is the perfect opportunity for Frank,” NYC FC sporting director Claudio Reyna said. “He is in great shape following the World Cup, and training and playing with our colleagues in Manchester will enable to Frank to be fit and ready for our inaugural training camp.
“Everyone has been hugely impressed with Frank’s positivity, and ‘m sure he will bring a lot to City during his stint with the club. We wish him well for his spell with Manchester City and look forward to welcoming him back to New York in the New Year.”
Man City have returned to England following their preseason tour of the U.S. and are preparing for the FA Community Shield match on Sunday against Arsenal, though its unlikely that Lampard will play.
However, with Man City taking part in the English Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, and UEFA Champions League this fall, Lampard is likely to be given plenty of chances to show that even at his age he still has what it takes to play at a high level.
“Frank is a world class midfielder and this is an opportunity which works perfectly for everyone, the player, Manchester City, and New York City,” Man City manager Manuel Pellegrini said. “I’m looking forward to working with him and integrating him into our squad. New York have made a fantastic signing by recruiting Frank, and I’m really pleased that we’ll be able to have him with us for the first half of our season and help prepare him for his new challenge.”
What do you think of this news? Think this is a good move for Lampard? Do you expect him to start in the EPL or for him to play mostly mid-week matches?
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