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Mourinho: Frank Lampard and Chelsea are on 'just a little break'

Shaun Botterill

If you were alive in the mid-to-late 90s and early 00s, you probably were exposed to the horrendous sitcom called Friends.  A show about five loathsome and one actually likable friend, it ran, inescapably, for ten seasons.  Somewhere in the middle of season 3, Rachel and Ross break up, which happens like every episode basically, but this time some "comedy" hijinks ensure and the line 'we were on a break' becomes a running gag for the rest of the show.

I wish I could forget all that; talk about wasted brain space.  But I can't.  And now I've been reminded of it all again by Mourinho's latest quotes Re Frank Lampard.

"You can't imagine how difficult [the face-to-face meeting] was. But at the same time, I can feel some happiness about the process because, for sure, he comes back to Chelsea. Mr Abramovich - the No1, the most important person - wants very much for Frank to be back, I want him to be back, the staff want him to be back, so he comes back, for sure."

"The other thing is that he can come back the way he wants. Mr Abramovich has left the door completely open for him on the understanding Frank can do anything he wants at this club. He can come back when he wants and, to repeat Mr Abramovich's words, the way he wants."

"He can be a coach, he can start at the academy, he can start being my assistant at the same time because he is doing his coaching badges or he can start in a different role. He can decide: ‘I don't want to start immediately at the coaching role, I want to be an ambassador, I want to work hand in hand with the CEO, representing the club in important places of our life.' It's not the end of Frank Lampard's career in Chelsea. It's just a little break."

I'd like to believe that this "process" was effectively a mutually agreed upon course of action.  If Lampard wants to play for a few more years and not just warm the bench, this is the correct choice for him.  Harry Redknapp and Michael Ballack have chimed in recently with similar notions from the peanut gallery as well.  The door will always be open for him at Chelsea, just like for Didier Drogba and others.  Exactly as it should be.

"He's a man to play a major role in a team, not like [what] happened in the last year - playing sometimes, sometimes not playing, playing 60 minutes, not starting every game. I think for him, for his mentality, for his personality, it's better to get a club and probably a competition where he is really the top man."

Considering that it was Mourinho who (helped) convince Lampard to stay last season, this current decision is probably the best for all involved, however hard it may have been.

"I think the World Cup is the perfect way for somebody with more than 100 caps to finish his career in the national team," Mourinho said. "I told him that: ‘Don't go more than the World Cup. The World Cup is the right moment to finish.' Does he accept that? Yes."

Plus, Rachel and Ross end up together anyway at the end of Friends and presumably live happily ever after.

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