One of the most talented Designated Players in MLS has decided to leave at the end of the year, as Frank Lampard has reportedly announced he's leaving New York City FC once his current deal ends in December.
Lampard spoke to NYCFC.com and was thankful with a lot of people that helped him settle stateside, from the coaching staff to the teammates and the fans.
“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," Lampard said. "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.”
Both the Head Coach, Patrick Vieira, and the Sporting Director, Claudio Reyna, expressed gratitude to Lampard during his time with the franchise.
Vieira emphasized that “everybody talks about Frank’s goal-scoring record from midfield but I can tell you after a year of working with him, he brings so much more to a team than just goals."
Frank Lampard's New York City FC career by numbers:— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 14, 2016
First player to ever score a hat-trick for the club. https://t.co/j5SwK6vF2O
"What Frank has brought to the locker room is something just as important – his experience, his elite mentality and his mentorship for the younger members of our squad have helped us greatly this year. It is clear that Frank has embraced playing in this league and for this club. I am grateful for his service in my first year here and I wish him the very best in whatever he chooses to do next,” he added.
Reina, on the other hand, said the former Chelsea star was an ambassador that always set the example for the rest of the team.
“On and off the pitch he has been a fantastic ambassador," said Reyna. "I would tell any young player to watch Frank, to see how he’s conducted himself over the last two years and to use that as inspiration as to how an elite, professional footballer should approach the game. From the second he walked through the door, he’s set the example."
Undoubtedly one of Lampard's best moments as a NYCFC member was the fact that he was the first player to score a hat-trick for the club. He did it against the Colorado Rapids on July 30:
The former Chelsea midfielder leaves NYCFC with 15 goals in 31 appearances over the past two seasons. It remains to be seen whether the 38-year-old will retire or play elsewhere, but this season he proved he can still be an effective player if he's fit.