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Lampard Negotiations Stall as Chelsea Heads to the States

Frank Lampard, Chelsea's top scorer last season and the man Coach Jose Mourinho once said Real Madrid could not afford, is now seeking a new deal with the South London club, although none appears to be arriving anytime soon, the Times Online reports. Lampard had "a miserable World Cup," putting in several sub-par performances during England's failed World Cup campaign. The Chelsea midfielder may have three years remaining on his five-year deal, but he's already looking to secure a pay raise that would put him in line with new signings Michael Ballack and Andriy Shevchenko, who receive about $242,000 per week. Lampard currently receives a pithy $186,000 per week. Why the delay? Lampard's poor World Cup has nothing to do with it, the club says, but for the moment Mourinho and company have bigger fish to fry, namely the signing of Arsenal left-back Ashley Cole, and then sorting out the futures of the unhappy Hernan Crespo and Wayne Bridge, and the less-unhappy Didier Drogba and William Gallas. If Lampard doesn't get the deal he's looking for, it could signal the end of his days at Stamford Bridge, as the arrival of Shevchenko and Ballack tips the balance of power and experience at Chelsea. Coach Jose Mourinho has admitted that it's impossible to keep everyone in his star-studded squad happy. The English Champions flew into LAX last night with a squad that did not include Hernan Crespo, to begin a tour of the U.S. They play an MLS all-star team in Chicago on Aug. 5. Said Mourinho: "I like coming to the States because of the freedom the players have, which is different from in Europe. The players need some space, to be able to go for a walk after dinner, not just go back to their hotel rooms and then see the same players the next day. They need to develop communication, and the States is a good place for that."

Read the whole story at Times Online »

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