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Lampard set to leave New York City

New York City have announced that Frank Lampard will leave the MLS club when his contract expires at the end of 2016.

What’s the story?

The midfielder has spent the last year representing the American club, scoring 15 goals in 31 appearances, but he will be waving goodbye to the Big Apple at the end of the year.

Lampard initially signed for New York in 2014, but rather than join up with the club straight away, he made the controversial move to Manchester City on a season-long loan, where he scored six Premier League goals.

At the age of 38, Lampard wrote his name down in New York City FC history by scoring the team’s first-ever hat-trick against Colorado Rapids on July 30.

It may not be up there amongst Lampard’s finest achievements considering the midfielder won three top-flight titles and the Champions League with Chelsea, but nonetheless, he has been a pivotal part in boosting interest in the game across the pond.

Along with the announcement, Lampard told NYCFC’s official website: “As my time at NYCFC comes to an end, I would like to thank so many people for the kindness and support that they have shown me over the last two years.

“My teammates have been a pleasure to play alongside. The amazing fans have given me incredible support and backing.

“I have very much enjoyed my time, and I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to play for such a great club and in such an incredible city.”

What next for Lampard?

The big question is does he retire or prolong his playing career elsewhere?

Being just two years shy of 40 would suggest that Lampard will hang up his boots and embark on a new career, perhaps in management or TV punditry, like so many of his peers.

The ex-Chelsea star has suggested in interviews that he is interested in moving into coaching, and with his knowledge and intelligence of the game, he is a figure that would be welcomed into the fold with open arms.

Lampard would have watched his NYCFC manager Patrick Vieira closely as the former Arsenal star is cutting his teeth in coaching having been appointed by the club in November following a role within Manchester City’s youth system.

On the flip side, a big-money move could still be an option for Lampard, with the Chinese Super League being a potential destination.

Could an England role be on the cards?

In October, The Sun reported that Lampard and his former England teammate Steven Gerrard could be fast-tracked through the coaching-badge process by the Football Association.

It was claimed that the powers that be in English football would offer the pair the chance to impart their professional wisdom on the current squad, with Eric Dier, John Stones and Dele Alli being singled out as players that the duo could work with directly.

Neither Lampard nor Gerrard managed to set England alight during the peak of their international careers, and the long-standing debate of whether the two midfielders could play alongside one another rages on.

However, should the FA offer Lampard that particular route into coaching, he could provide invaluable guidance to the younger members of the squad.

Article title: Lampard set to leave New York City

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