England key to Lampard move
Frank Lampard has confirmed he will speak to England boss Roy Hodgson if his next career move threatens to take him outside Europe.
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Despite his sensational form for Chelsea, which includes netting his 200th goal for the Stamford Bridge outfit against West Ham on Sunday, still there has been no offer of a contract extension.
It leaves Lampard's future beyond the end of this season in doubt.
Clearly, the 34-year-old will not be short of options.
Major League Soccer has been mentioned as one possible destination, whilst lucrative contracts are also available in the oil-rich Gulf States, in addition to the Far East.
Yet all those destinations would take Lampard away from England, and into a football arena of dubious quality.
The midfielder insists it is not an issue he has given much thought to at present.
However, when he does, Lampard intends to consult Hodgson.
"Whilst I am available for England I want to do my best to try and put myself in the squad," he said.
"If I am playing and in good enough form, I'd like to be included if we qualify for Brazil.
"That doesn't rule anything out. I've seen players get picked before playing all over the world.
"If there's ever a time, whenever it is, where there is an option of going outside Europe, I am sure Roy and I would have the conversation, whether it's before or during."
Lampard certainly does not view that conversation as being a difficult one, if and when it happens.
For whilst questions might be asked over the manner in which Hodgson dealt with Rio Ferdinand's botched call-up given the Manchester United man was evidently not fit enough to accept, Lampard has found communication under the 65-year-old to be a smooth process.
"Roy has been a breath of fresh air," he said.
"I know players will always wax lyrical about their current managers, that's just the nature of the beast. You can't expect them to say negatives.
"But I'm being honest talking about Roy. He's a gentleman, first and foremost.
"From the minute I first sat down with him at Chelsea when he came to meet a few of us there before the Euros, I found him a very personable bloke, very dedicated on the training ground, very driven, very pushed, very easy and friendly to talk to - in a good way.
"I have complete respect for him. With me, his communication has been fantastic."
And one of the things Hodgson has made clear to Lampard in their various chats is that age will not be the determining factor in team selection.
"It was nice to hear," said Lampard.
"That's how I'd see it as a manager. If players are performing for you, their age shouldn't really matter.
"As long as they're good influences in the dressing room and help the players around them, older players can bring their experience to the table.
"Look at Alex Ferguson, probably the best manager of all time, playing Ryan Giggs at 40 years of age against Real Madrid when we all thought he might not.
"If you've got experience and you're good enough, managers will give you that opportunity."
And that is handy for Lampard given he wants those additional six appearances that would allow him to join England's exclusive '100 club'.
"One hundred caps and is a fantastic achievement," he said.
"I watched Steven and Ashley do it and grew up on tales of Bobby Moore from my Dad.
"So, if I could get into the bracket of 100 caps, I'd be very proud."