The Most Decorated Player: When Frank Lampard joined Chelsea for £11m on this day 21 years ago

Frank Lampard joined Chelsea today 21 years ago.

Frank Lampard

During his 13 years at Stamford Bridge, Frank Lampard won a lot more than just trophies. He may have departed Chelsea 8 years ago with three Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two League Cups, a Europa League crown and, last but not least, the Champions League, but his biggest personal achievement was perhaps the way that he went about winning over even the most begrudging of neutrals to earn his place among the greatest top-flight players of all time.

It all started on this day in 2001, when a fresh-faced 22-year-old Frank Lampard made the move across London from West Ham United to Chelsea in a deal worth £11m. Shortly after the Hammers had announced Glenn Roeder as their new manager, a far more permanent fixture was being welcomed up the Stamford Bridge as Lampard stepped foot into his new surroundings for the first time.

“A lot happened at West Ham but I will always be grateful to them – they gave me my chance,” he explained to the Daily Mail upon signing a five-year contract with the Blues.

“It’s always been my ambition from day one to play European football. Hopefully I can test myself against the best players in Europe and we can contest for trophies. The chance of European football and working with a well-respected coach will bring my game on.”

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22 year old Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge for his presentation

“With careers and where I am now it’s easy to look back on various phases,” Frank Lampard recently told The Telegraph. “I had a phase when I felt on top of my game for a few years and nothing could break me. I didn’t have to think; I just played.

“Then you get parts of your career where every bad game people write you off, managers come in with slightly different ideas. But I just took it all on the chin as I got older and from the age of around 32/33 it was going to be a different career for me and looking back from that stage they were probably my most successful years.

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