AVB plays down Lampard fears

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Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas has played down talks of an issue with Frank Lampard after the England international was an unused substitute in Saturday's 4-1 win over Swansea City.

The veteran midfielder watched from the sidelines as Ramires scored twice at Stamford Bridge, with reports that the player 'stormed off' following the victory against the Welsh side.

However, these claims have been strenuously denied by the Blues, and the former Porto boss insists Lampard remains an integral part of his plans for the season ahead of their Champions League clash against Valencia.

“This is nothing to speculate about. They are team players and the players want the team to perform, and Frank is like that," said AVB.

"He is a key player, no doubt about it. He is a fantastic player, a magnificent player and soon he will be back to the team, sooner than you expect.

“The decisions today were mainly based on the fact we played 120 minutes (in the Carling Cup) on Wednesday and these players were fresh, apart from John Terry and Petr Cech. In a tight calendar like we have, it’s important to have squad rotation.”


Swansea City boss Brendan Rogers waded further into the debate, believing the player had simply been rested with a view to European commitments.

The former Blues' youth and reserve team manager is in no doubt that Lampard will bounce back from his omission, and thinks the 33-year-old can continue to score goals for the remainder of his illustrious career.

"I presume Frank was rested with a nod towards the Valencia game, and when he was not in the team it could only help us,” said the Swans boss.

“I know Frank well and I think he will be one of those players like [Javier] Zanetti who just goes on and on, and will continue to score goals. He may have to change position slightly, but he’s still got big ambitions and he will always score goals.

"Frank is a fantastic professional.”

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