Frank Lampard is considered to be one of the best English footballers of his generation, as well as one of the Premier League's greatest midfielders.

Vice-captain for club and country, Lampard is known for his work rate, range of passing and goalscoring ability, largely playing as a box-to-box midfielder.

So far, he has lifted the Champions League trophy, together with 11 domestic honours in his 12-year spell at Chelsea, having also represented England at three major tournaments.

However, with his days at Stamford Bridge seeming numbered, there are plenty of English players hoping to match his ability and plethora of achievements.

And, bizarrely, they all have first names beginning with the letter 'J'...

1. Jack Wilshere | Arsenal | Age: 21

He has long been looked upon as the saviour of English football, but will injury prevent Arsenal's youngest ever league player from fulfilling his much talked about potential? Wilshere has played just 19 games for the Gunners this season, after missing the entirety of the 2011/12 campaign through injury.

The Stevenage-born star is highly regarded by managers Arsene Wenger and Fabio Capello for his technique and sophisticated footballing brain. Yet, it remains to be seen whether he is able to develop physically enough to emulate legends like Liam Brady, Dennis Bergkamp or, indeed, Frank Lampard.

2. Jack Rodwell | Manchester City | Age: 22

Rodwell has only started eight games for Manchester City this season, since joining from Everton for £12m, though he has been tipped for the top by countless commentators. Despite being more defensively inclined than his counterparts, the youngster played a starring role and rose to prominence during the 2009 European U21 Championships. He will need more senior experience to relive those heights.

3. Josh McEachran | Middlesbrough (on loan from Chelsea) | Age: 20

Chelsea's former Young Player of the Year made his way through the Stamford Bridge ranks while Lampard was at his prime. He is known as a wonderful passer of the ball, with unparalleled ingenuity for his age. McEachran is highly regarded by the Blues, signing a five-year contract in 2011, but the teenager has been yet to find consistency during loan spells with Swansea City and Middlesbrough.

4. Josh Vela | Bolton Wanderers | Age: 19

A product of the Bolton Wanderers academy, Vela signed a professional contract with the Championship side in March 2011. He made his debut for the club against Swansea City twelve months ago, gaining the interest of Arsenal scouts amongst others. Nevertheless, his performance levels have dropped following a four-month absence due to injury and the 18-year-old has only started two league games this season.

5. James Ward-Prowse | Southampton | Age: 18

The Portsmouth-born teenager has enjoyed a fantastic first season for Southampton under the guidance of Nigel Adkins and lately Mauricio Pochettino. He has made 13 Premier League appearances since his daunting league debut against Manchester City. Ward-Prowse scored a goal in his first professional match last season, an FA Cup tie against Coventry City, and remains a huge Saints prospect.

Conclusion

English football is finding Lampard-esque talent as frequently as ever - but do the youngsters have the required attention and perseverance to successfully replace Lampard?

 

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Topics:
Josh McEachran
Football
Chelsea
Premier League
Jack Wilshere
Jack Rodwell