Chelsea icon Frank Lampard believes that former coach Jose Mourinho would rise to the challenge at Manchester United should the club turn to him to revive their flagging fortunes.
The Portuguese has long been the front-runner to replace former mentor Louis van Gaal since ending his second spell at Stamford Bridge in December with the Blues languishing in the bottom half of the table.
Lampard, who won two leagues titles and three domestic trophies in Mourinho’s first spell in charge at Chelsea between 2004 and 2007, is convinced that the unemployed coach would be a success at Old Trafford should United decide to part company with Van Gaal at the end of the 2015-16 season.
“I think Mourinho can manage anywhere in the world,” the New York City FC midfielder, who was in attendance at the FIFA Interactive World Cup finals, told Goal when asked if Mourinho could return United to their former glory.
“I think he’s shown it with his record and whether it’s with Porto, a so-called smaller team in Europe; Chelsea, the success he had there; Inter, again taking a team that’s hardly won the Champions League to go and win it; Real Madrid.
“No job will be too much for him. [Manchester United is] not an easy job, similar with Antonio Conte with Chelsea [the Italian is expected to take over in the summer], but he certainly has the attributes to do it.”
Meanwhile, Lampard’s former Chelsea and England team-mate John Terry has been locked in a dispute over whether to extend his Blues contract, which is set to expire in June.
The centre-back has been vocal in his desire to re-sign at Stamford Bridge, while the club appear to be reluctant to meet his demands.
However, Lampard thinks Terry’s talent and experience could be crucial in recovering from the disappointment of a season spent in mid-table obscurity.
“It’s a difficult one with John Terry,” he said. “I think, for me, he’s been probably the best defender at Chelsea again this year. I think he’s a leader, he has a huge presence with the club.
“For me, I would [give him another contract], but it’s a decision for the club to make. I know John wants to stay.
I think he’s a help for the young players at the club, I think he’s a link with the fans at the club, but the decision will be made by the owners.
Same as what happened with me, eventually your time comes. I’m not sure now is his time.
I’ve seen him perform this year, and I think he’s done very well.”
Lampard left the Premier League behind in 2015 to join MLS franchise NYCFC midway through its debut season.
One of his team-mates at Yankee Stadium is Italy, Juventus and AC Milan legend Andrea Pirlo and the Englishman freely admits that he has been left in awe of his former World Cup and Champions League rival.
“Pirlo is great,” Lampard said.
“I have huge respect from playing against him for many years, and playing with him is an absolute pleasure. His passing, his work ethic, which I didn’t know until I played with him, how hard he works in the week in training and in the gym.
As a player, he’s a genius with the ball.”
Lampard Backs Mourinho For Manchester United Job
Reviewed by Link Naija