Former Chelsea midfielder and Blues legend Frank Lampard called time to his playing career just over a year ago, after stints in the Premier League and Major League Soccer.
The 39-year-old who has dreams of venturing into management has looked back at his playing career and admits he didn’t make all the right decisions in his playing days, and many Chelsea fans will point to joining Manchester City as one of them.
In an interview with the Guardian, Lampard said: “I didn’t make all the right decisions in my career, far from it, but when I got to the end I felt I’d given it my full whack.
“When you can think: ‘I put everything on the table and that’s my lot,’ I think you have been quite successful. That’s probably what drove me on as a player for quite a long while – I wanted to make sure I took every ounce out of the game and got the most out of myself.
“And then it becomes like a relief, when you feel that the work’s done and it wasn’t too bad. I didn’t have too many failures, and I actually did some pretty good stuff. I’m very content with that. I’ve hardly kicked a ball since I finished, and I’ve got no craving to kick a ball. I do other things now.”
Lampard won four FA Cups, three league titles, two League Cups and the Champions League and Europa League once each, and won an incredible 106 England caps in an international career that stretched for nearly 15 years.
The Chelsea legend admits that he’s happy with what he has achieved in the game and with his transition from playing till his retirement.
“When you’re at a big club, there isn’t much breathing space,” he says. “You’re continuously trying to win things, to perform to the best of your ability, and it can be quite tiring. I’ll be honest, at the end of my career I was ready to move on. In terms of the intense pressure I put on myself for that period of time, I felt ready. I’m asked a lot now: ‘Are you missing football?’ And I’m actually not. I sit here pretty happy with my lot.
“When you’re playing you get looked after, you have people around you who completely put you out of the real world, and then the real world hits you smack in the face when you finish. But I was fortunate in that the transition hasn’t been a problem for me. I needed the pause, I really did. I needed the lack of structure in my life for a while. I felt kind of ready for that. It was a necessity for me to get away. It’s been a year and a half, almost, and now I have the hunger. So it’ll come when it comes, if the right opportunity comes for me.”