Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard, who was ruled out of England's squad for the 2012 European Championships with a thigh injury, has said he was shocked to hear of Harry Redknapp's dismissal from the managerial post at Tottenham Hotspur.
The decision to fire Redknapp was taken after Spurs failed to register a place in next season's Champions League, although many believe that was only cover for deteriorating relations between Redknapp and club chairman Daniel Levy.
Lampard's concern is understandable. Not only is Redknapp the Blues' midfielder's uncle, it was because of Chelsea's success in the Champions League that Spurs were denied a place among Europe's elite next season, despite finishing fourth in the Premier League.
Chelsea beat Bayern Munich on 19 May to claim their maiden Champions League crown and earned the right to defend their title next season, even though they finished sixth in the league and well out of technical consideration for a place in Europe.
"I feel really bad for Harry, especially as my biggest success in football turned out so unlucky for him. He deserved Champions League football. He and Spurs finished fourth. That's why I'm still shell-shocked by what's happened," The Sun quoted Lampard as saying.
"I have some mates who are Spurs fans and they are desperately disappointed. They remember how they were rock-bottom when Harry came in," ESPN reported Lampard as saying, "Then, all of a sudden, they're playing in the Champions League and competing at the top. He's done an amazing job,"
Meanwhile, as far his own career at Stamford Bridge is concerned, the 33 year old playmaker looks set to extend his contract with Chelsea, following Roberto Di Matteo's confirmation as the Blues' manager, according to a Mirror report. Lampard, who has just a year left on his contract, has regained the form he lost under former manager Andre Villas-Boas.
With the appointment of Di Matteo in particular, Lampard began playing a crucial role within the team and was key in the FA Cup win and the sensational Champions League triumph. Lampard has confirmed his desire to stay with Chelsea and feels the club will do even better in a full season under the Italian manager. He has support from the 42 year old Di Matteo who regards him, along with senior players like John Terry and Ashley Cole, as key members of the squad.
Lampard has repeatedly stated his wish to end his playing career with Chelsea, wants to be seen in the same league as one-club legends Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs.