Lampard - Gerrard is Liverpool's greatest player

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Gerrard v Lampard battle set to be revived in MLS
Gerrard v Lampard battle set to be revived in MLS

Frank Lampard has hailed Steven Gerrard as Liverpool's greatest ever player and says he is relishing the chance to play against his former England team-mate in the MLS later this year.

Lampard is looking forward to starting his career with New York City, while Gerrard is set to link up with Robbie Keane at LA Galaxy on July 1st, with the pair certain to add some high profile sparkle to American soccer.

Gerrard made the headlines for all the wrong reasons last weekend as he was sent off in Liverpool's home defeat against Manchester United, but Lampard suggests nothing can tarnish his golden Anfield legacy.

"What more can he do for Liverpool? He has had a fantastic career," asks Lampard.

"I wasn't sure about my timings as a Chelsea player but the decision got made for me. When you have got to make the decision for yourself it's a bit more difficult maybe.

"Only he knows that but at the minute I would say yes. He has been - if not their greatest player - right up there with their greatest players ever."

One challenge Lampard is particularly looking forward to is facing his long-time international team-mate and club rival Steven Gerrard.

Liverpool captain Gerrard is also heading across the Atlantic at the end of the season, to join Los Angeles Galaxy.

Lampard has already checked the fixture list as he said: "August 23!" Lampard said, without hesitation, when asked if he knew when the two clubs were due to meet. "It's at their place.

"I am pleased for Stevie. I think it is a very good move for him and I think it is great for the league. People in Europe at the top leagues are talking about MLS. Players will go there.

"I look forward to being competitive against Stevie. We get on very well, particularly in our latter years as captain and vice-captain of England. I have a huge amount of respect for him."

Lampard was expected to join New York City for the start of the MLS season this month, but he delayed his arrival to extend his loan spell with Manchester City and now he is looking forward to the final chapter of his career.

"I am very excited. I am very fortunate about this part of my career, coming to City. It was something I never saw coming," he added.

"At 36 I got asked to come to the champions and a club with this pedigree. I am delighted that happened as it has done, and I am delighted about the future and the opportunity to go and play in New York - to try and make the best of it individually, to help there and also be part of a new football club in one of the best cities in the world. I am fortunate.

"I've watched New York's games so far and thought they looked fantastic, the home game particularly.

"I thought the atmosphere in the ground, the crowd - I've had feedback from inside the club about what a buzz there is for it in the city. I was delighted for the lads.

"There were question marks over it before - this is a completely new thing for so many of us. Who knows? What I do know is the people behind the scenes have done an amazing job. I hope it goes from strength to strength."