So, why does Fergie want to talk to Frank? Simply put, Lampard to Manchester United is a transfer which makes perfect sense...
But despite Chelsea being ready to show Frank Lampard the exit, the England star (yes, he is still an international) is not going to be without a number of offers once he leaves Stamford Bridge at the end of the season.
Not just any old offers from teams who are punching well below Chelsea’s weight either. In fact, Premier League leaders Manchester United are in line to snap up the midfielder who is poised to be the freebie of the summer.
But what does United manager Sir Alex Ferguson see in a player Chelsea are so brazenly willing to let go?
Time, of course, is not on Lampard's side. In an era when the country’s top teams flinch at the thought of signing anyone over 29, it’s perhaps a little surprising that a player in his mid-30s has emerged as a top target for anyone, let alone United.
But the things Lampard can contribute to a team, a squad and a club are so valuable that just about everyone involved within the game is startled at Chelsea’s snub towards a player that has given them 12 years of invaluable service.
While Chelsea fans will sing, ‘sign him up’ during almost every game he has left at the club, Fergie will be plotting how he can tinker his midfield to cater for Lampard.
Paul Scholes, 38, may be set to retire for a second time while at 39 Ryan Giggs is also on the brink of calling time on an illustrious career.
It is bizarre to think of Lampard as a younger option at this stage of his career but his professionalism and experience make him a perfect replacement for such highly regarded and respected players at Old Trafford.
Alan Hansen’s immortal ‘you don’t win anything with kids’ quote may have come back to haunt him with Fergie’s Fledglings in 1996 but they have been a one-off and the former Liverpool defender had a point (just look at Aston Villa’s current state).
Rather than break the bank to sign a big-name or a youngster showing huge potential, it was the already-retired Scholes that Ferguson turned to in an attempt to strengthen his central midfield halfway through last season.
It was a gamble that so nearly paid off, with just goal difference denying United the Premier League title, but enough was shown by Scholes to prove there is still a place for a wise old head in a modern day title challenging team.
But is there a place for Lampard at United? Giggs and Scholes are possible departures but there is a plethora of central options.
|Sorry, Chelsea fans: No matter how much you sing 'sign him up', Lampard is set to leave this summer|
Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick provide experience having won the Champions League at the club, while Tom Cleverley and Anderson continue to improve as they approach their mid-20s.
Shinji Kagawa has impressed since joining from Borussia Dortmund last summer and the promising Nick Powell is earmarked to be the future of United’s midfield.
But with injuries, illness and lack of experience affecting all of the above at some point in the last year, the addition of Lampard at the Theatre of Dreams would be a fantastic coup for Ferguson.
The most important reason is that Lampard has proven he is still capable of delivering high quality performances required at a club the size of United. That’s enough for anyone, but he offers much more behind the scenes too.
Ferguson recognises the importance of having a senior star for academy players and even young first teamers to try to emulate and look up to for inspiration.
Lampard's dedication to training and his desire to give 100 per cent in every match until the end of his contract is an example to all youngsters.
They seem like little details but it’s the bread and butter basics of a professional footballer and something that Sportsmail’s Jamie Redknapp accused many youth players coming into the game of lacking with their approach to chase money instead of sporting success (Click here to read Jamie's brilliant column).
Keeping a young star's feet grounded is another Fergie trait, with the United boss ordering his academy players to wear black boots.
It’s not just about the deal suiting United though, it’s one that has to fit in with the player and a switch to Old Trafford ticks all the boxes.
Judging by Giggs's and Scholes’s presence in the United side, it’s not unreasonable to expect Lampard to have a chance to play at Old Trafford for four years – no other top team in the Premier League can offer such a future to a player in his late 30s.
It’s not just longevity but longevity at the top. Simply put, Frank Lampard to Manchester United is a transfer which makes perfect sense for everyone involved. It’s a surprise a deal hasn’t already been completed.
Source: mail online