Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini has hailed former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard as ‘world class’ and said sister club New York City FC have made a ‘fantastic’ signing in the 36-year-old.
Chelsea fans’ favourite Lampard has signed to Man City as part of a deal which will see him play for the Premier League champions for five months prior to his move to the United States Major league Soccer (MLS) in January.
New York City FC are a brand new MLS outfit under the same ownership of Man City. They kick off their debut season in early 2015 and Lampard, who is entering his 20th year as a top flight first team footballer, will take with him a wealth of experience combined with skill and knowledge of the game.
City boss Pellegrini believes the Romford-born midfielder will benefit his side on a short-term basis prior to his move to the Big Apple.
“Frank is a world class midfielder and this is an opportunity which works perfectly for everyone, the player, Manchester City, and New York City” he told reporters at Lampard’s official unveiling at the Etihad Stadium.
“I’m looking forward to working with him and integrating him into our squad.
“New York have made a fantastic signing by recruiting Frank. 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.”
Lampard left behind him an army of adoring fans at Chelsea who had watched him transform from a good prospect – who had been snapped up from West Ham in 2001 – into one of the best attacking midfielders in the country.
In 13 years with Chelsea, their deputy captain played 429 games and scored 211 goals. The No.8 won the Premier League three times, the Champions League once, the FA Cup four times along with other domestic cups and shields as a Blues player.