David Beckham may have played his last game with the Los Angeles Galaxy, but manager Bruce Arena could still have a prominent England midfielder on his roster next season.
According to multiple reports, Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard is set to leave Chelsea at the end of the season on a free transfer to the defending MLS champions. The deal is believed to be for three years, with Lampard looking to end his professional career in California.
Meanwhile, Lampard continues to make an impact for Chelsea. The veteran converted a crucial penalty kick for the Blues on Sunday in a victory over London rival Arsenal, 2-1.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Chelsea could be inclined to offer the goal-scoring midfielder a contract extension, although Lampard’s agent has revealed that the club have informed him that no new deal will be offered. Numerous Premier League clubs have reportedly made overtures for Lampard, while the Daily Mail reported that Lazio, Monaco, and Chinese Club Ghuizho Renhe were also interested in Chelsea’s second all-time top scorer.
"We're still in conversation with him," Galaxy President Chris Klein said of Lampard.
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Arena also confirmed that a deal is not in place.
“I wouldn't be surprised if over the next week or so we're going to have some sort of decision we're going to make with a Designated Player,” said Arena. “We wouldn't rule a move for Lampard out. It's always a possibility.”
Lampard, 34, joined the Blues in 2001, and quickly emerged as perhaps the club’s most popular player. He has 389 appearances with Chelsea and 93 with England, and has been praised for his professionalism on both squads.
The potential arrival of Lampard is welcome news for the Galaxy, as the status of attacking midfielder Landon Donovan remains unclear. The 30-year-old has been absent from U.S. National Team duties, and he has publicly suggested that he might retire or take time away from the game.
The Galaxy have been rather active in trying to replace Beckham, but Lampard would be the most high-profile move since the season ended. There have also been reports that the Galaxy were pursuing Brazilian central midfielder Kaka, who appears set to leave Real Madrid.
On Dec. 31, Los Angeles added goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini, who reunites with former Tottenham teammate Robbie Keane.
The Galaxy begin their season on Mar. 3, when they host the Chicago Fire. Chelsea’s season ends in May.