LAMPARD: BIGGEST RESPONSE

Posted on: Fri 18 May 2012

On the eve of the Champions League Final, Frank Lampard has called on his teammates to draw on the experience of the painful defeat at the same stage in Moscow four years ago in order to ensure we head back to west London as European champions.

The midfielder, who will captain Roberto Di Matteo's side against Bayern Munich, along with the likes of Petr Cech, John Terry, Ashley Cole and Didier Drogba, was part of the Blues team who were cruelly beaten by Manchester United in a penalty shoot-out back in 2008, and while he insisted that negative experiences make you stronger in football, this time, he is desperate for a different outcome.

'It's not something that's traumatic every day, you learn as a player you can't win everything, occasionally you lose, but you have to take the positives and you have to be more determined,' said the 33-year-old.

'We need to use the disappointment from Moscow to inspire us. The Champions League is the biggest, you saw the celebrations after we beat Barcelona, we're delighted to be here and we want to win the game.

'We're pleased to be back, we probably wouldn't have believed we would have been here a few months ago. We've got good and bad memories from Moscow, but the main one is that we lost the game. It's taken a while for us to get back here but we knew we had the ability to do so. Only tomorrow will it be the reprieve if we win the game.'

There has been widespread speculation that the future of Di Matteo, and whether or not he is handed the reins on a permanent basis, is solely dependent on the outcome of the match.

The Italian has done an impressive job since being placed in charge following the departure of Andre Villas-Boas, and Lampard believes he deserves a great deal of credit for the Blues standing on the brink of making history.

'People think we ring up the owner and decide who comes in and who gets sacked, that's not how it works here and I don't think it should work like that at any club,' he argued.

'As a player you play, if you start thinking about those decisions then your eye is off the ball, but at the same time if we win, I'll be delighted for the manager and the club.

'He's been very clever in how he's managed it, rather than come in and make drastic changes he spoke to everybody individually. The Napoli game changed everything, and from there he's done a perfect job, he deserves to win the game as much as anybody.'