Lampard wishes Mourinho well
LONDON // Frank Lampard will wish Jose Mourinho, his former Chelsea manager, well on Saturday in his attempt to win the Champions League with Inter Milan. He hopes the Portuguese, whose side beat Chelsea in the quarter finals and now take on Bayern Munich in the final, will succeed and add to the two Premier League titles he won at Stamford Bridge. But Lampard was also eager for Chelsea to put the Mourinho era behind them and look forward to an exciting new one under Carlo Ancelotti. The Italian might not have the charismatic and controversial persona of his predecessor, but a historic Premier League and FA Cup double in his first season in England has highlighted his value, which perhaps was not previously appreciated. "People will always say Chelsea has great players, a great squad and that kind of raises expectations," said Lampard. "That's why Harry Redknapp and Roy Hodgson are Managers of the Year because people don't quite expect what they did and they deserve that accolade because of where they have taken their clubs. "But you can't take away from Ancelotti what he has done. He goes up there with them two as the best managers of the year. People always say you want to get rid of the ghosts of Jose Mourinho. No you don't. You want to embrace what he has done at the club and want to start again. "Personally, I hope Jose goes on and wins the Champions League because I have complete respect for him and he was great for my career. The manager knew the work Jose had done here and Ancelotti does it in his own way. "Looking back [at the defeat to Inter] it was one of the moments that was negative at the time, but we turned it into a positive. Without that defeat, who knows whether we would have won the league and finished how we did in style." Lampard said Chelsea will not lose the appetite for more success next season and look to "set the benchmark" for others to follow. "We had a few barren years where we didn't quite win as much as we wanted and when you get that feeling again then it's quite addictive," he added. A tally of 27 goals was also the best of his career and has put the midfielder in confident mood going into the World Cup. He will use the penalty miss against Portsmouth in Saturday's FA Cup final to push him to stay on top form - and put himself back on the spot for his country should the need arise in the finals. England's defeat to Portugal in the 2006 World Cup was the fifth time in 16 years that the team have been eliminated from major competitions in penalty shootouts. "I've missed penalties for England, I've missed penalties for Chelsea and it comes with the territory," said Lampard. "It wouldn't put me off. I'm big enough to stand up and take them for England. This one I missed and it will play on my mind a little, but it will be completely overshadowed by the fact that we won the game and won the Double. It's quite good for me too that it happened because that kind of thing makes me address it and look at it when I go away with England. I will work on that kind of stuff. "Sometimes you need a little reminder of what you have got to do. But I feel very confident and I'm happy to take this form and mindset into the World Cup."
Published: May 18, 2010 04:00 AM