Frank Lampard: When Harry Redknapp hit back at West Ham fan who slated nephew in 1996

When Harry Redknapp defended a teenage Frank Lampard in 1996

Frank Lampard achieved so much during his career as a professional footballer.

By the time the Englishman retired from the sport in 2016, Lampard had established himself as one of the best midfielders of the 21st century.

Not everyone was convinced he would enjoy as much success as he did, though.

Back in 1996, an 18-year-old Lampard was slated by a supporter at a West Ham Fans Forum.

Lampard had made a handful of appearances for West Ham at this point and the supporter was not convinced he was anything special.



His manager and uncle, Harry Redknapp, felt otherwise.

Redknapp was not happy at all with the supporter and he hit back in style. Watch the iconic moment below…

“I want to ask Harry if he thinks the publicity he’s given to young Frank warrants it because, personally, I don’t think he’s quite good enough yet,” the supporter said to Redknapp, with Lampard also in attendance.

“I also think in the last couple of years you’ve let some good midfielders go for peanuts like Matt Holland and Scott Canham.”

Redknapp hit back: “Well, no, they definitely wasn’t good enough. He is good enough and he definitely will be good enough.

“I let Scott Canham go, he was a good kid, he worked very hard. He’s gone to Brentford, he can’t get in Brentford’s team. He’s 21 years of age.


“I let him go because young Frank’s 17/18 and he’s miles in front of him.”

The fan was not going to back down, though. He replied: “Well, that ain’t really true…”

Redknapp then doubled down and made the prediction that Lampard would go to the ‘very top’.

He continued: “That is true. That’s my opinion. I get paid to make judgments on players.

“Young Matt Holland – yeah, I think he may bounce back and may be First Division, he’s a decent player. And young Scotty Canham’s a decent player, don’t get me wrong. We offered him a two-year contract and he turned it down.

“He didn’t want to stay here. It was his decision to leave the club, I tried my hardest to keep him here. I doubled his wages, gave him a two-year contract and said ‘if you get in the team, you’ll earn good money’.

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“I’ll tell you now, without any shadow of a doubt, there will be no comparison between what Frank Lampard will achieve in football and what Scotty Canham will achieve in football.

“There is no favouritism. In fact, I’m probably holding him back more.

“I’m telling you now – and I didn’t want to say this in front of him – but he will go right to the very top. Right to the very top.

“I’ll tell you now: there ain’t no doubt about that, in my opinion, because he’s got everything that’s needed to become a top-class midfield player.”

Redknapp was right of course, with Lampard going on to become one of the best players of his generation.

Canham, meanwhile, spent most of his career in non-league before retiring with Thurrock in 2007.

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