Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that he wanted Frank Lampard to join him at Inter Milan when he started coaching the Italian giants in 2008.
Back then intense speculation surrounded Lampard's future – and Mourinho attempted to swoop when he arrived at the San Siro before the England international agreed a new five-year deal.
However, the Portuguese coach insists he always wanted to see the man who would become Chelsea's all-time top scorer sign a contract extension at Stamford Bridge.
"It was between the club and him before I arrived," Mourinho told reporters. "I tried to take Lampard to Inter. I was trying but at the same time I was saying you belong to Chelsea.
"I was not just pulling straight away. I was 'if you want to come, I want you'.
"In the end he did what he wanted to do and what I wanted him to do, which was sign a new contract with Chelsea."
Mourinho, who went on to win an historic treble with Inter before joining Real Madrid for three years in 2010, reunited with Lampard at Stamford Bridge this summer.
Last season there was serious doubt whether Lampard would even be at the club this term, but the Blues eventually offered the 35-year-old a one-year extension in May.
Lampard has featured nine times for Chelsea in all competitions at the start of this season, scoring two goals.