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Sakho and Zaha shine for Palace

Crystal Palace

The tale of two talismans

By ESPN Staff

Vieira encourages Lampard to join Inter

Internazionale star Patrick Vieira believes Frank Lampard is more than capable of making his mark on Italian football if he completes his move to the San Siro.

Speculation has been rife that the Chelsea midfielder is on his way to the Serie A champions to link up with former Blues boss and new Inter coach Jose Mourinho, with the Nerazzurri already having had a bid turned down for the England international.

Vieira is well aware of Lampard's talent, having squared up to him in midfield several times while playing for Arsenal, and the World Cup winner is convinced that Lampard is up to the challenge of Italian football.

'It will be a big challenge for him but at the same time it will be a fantastic one,' Vieira told the Sunday Mirror.

'He has won everything there is to win at Chelsea, he is one of the key men in the team there.

'Would he be welcome at Inter? He is a fantastic player and you want to play with players of that class. It will be one more good player.'

Vieira's former team-mate at Arsenal, Dennis Bergkamp, found it hard to adapt to the defensive style of play and was one of the many high-profile flops in Serie A.

But the France midfielder is confident Lampard would not be among that number.

'I know that the change in lifestyle would not be a problem,' continued Vieira. 'Frank would adjust to that.

'On the field there is less space than there is in England. It is more congested and that is why you don't get many 3-3 or 4-4 draws.

'It is not as open as it is in England. But he can adapt, don't worry.

'A good player can play in any league in the world - and he is a good player. I do not believe that will be a problem.

'When you are an international like him you get used to it very quickly.

'You have to live with the problems outside the stadium, but I don't think that will be a problem for Frank.'

Vieira believes Lampard could help finally end Inter's Champions League hoodoo.

The Serie A giants have won the Scudetto for three years on the trot but last won Europe's premier club competition in 1965.

Lampard helped propel Chelsea to the final last season and Vieira thinks the England player's arrival could be the final piece of the puzzle.

'He can enjoy himself at Inter, I really believe that,' said Vieira. 'Inter is a club that is going up as a football club. Now we want the Champions League. The club have the motivation and the ambition to do that.

'If Frank comes here then we will be stronger. The better players you have then the better chance you have.'

Vieira also feels that Lampard will easily fit into the Inter dressing room.

'I spoke with the players I know at Chelsea about him and all those players love him,' he continued. 'There must be a reason for that.

'I talked to him and he was really relaxed. He was cool and he was joking. He was sounding like people were saying he was.

'Now the aim is to win the league title in Italy, which we have done for the last (three) years, and the Champions League is a big target for us.'


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