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Antonio Conte remains coy on Frank Lampard speculation

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Chelsea legend Frank Lampard confirmed last week that he's leaving New York City FC at the end of the MLS season in December, but what may be next for Super Frank, perhaps not even he knows yet.

There are rumors of offers to continue playing in America, or to continue playing in Europe even at the age 38.  With some punditry experience behind him already, there are rumors of Lampard retiring and going into such a role.  And there are of course the rumors of him returning to Chelsea as an ambassador with a view towards coaching and perhaps eventually management.  Along similar lines, there are also rumors of Lampard (and Gerrard) joining the England coaching setup.

Unsurprisingly, Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte was asked about a potential return for Chelsea's all-time leading goalscorer in a non-playing role, but, also unsurprisingly, he didn't have much of anything to say about it.

"Frank Lampard has been a great player. [He was] a fantastic player for Chelsea. He won a lot with this team. But now, for me, he's still playing and for this reason I don't know his future."

"I repeat: he has been a fantastic player, a legend for this club. I have great respect for him. For me it's very difficult to reply to the question when the question starts 'if'. It's important to know that."

-Antonio Conte; source: Goal

Even if Lampard were to return to Chelsea right now, he probably wouldn't play much of a role on Conte's staff.  Perhaps one day, once Lampard has his coaching qualifications and a bit of experience.

We saw a very similar story play out with Didier Drogba last winter, one that could we see repeat over the next month or so.  We'll no doubt see a very similar story play out with John Terry as well.  I'm quite convinced all three will be back one day.  Current U18 head coach Jody Morris, a good friend and teammate to both Lampard and Terry, served a timely reminded earlier on Saturday.