Premier League

Monaco plays down Lampard rumor

Frank Lampard (2nd R) on the Chelsea bench at Shakhtar Donetsk.
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Monaco have claimed there is nothing solid behind speculation the French club could swoop for Chelsea's Frank Lampard next summer.

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New Blues boss Rafa Benitez has said he expects Lampard and defender Ashley Cole to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of next season.

Current Ligue 2 leaders Monaco are thought to be keen on signing Lampard as they target a revival following relegation the season before last, while Chinese side Guizhou Renhe and MLS club LA Galaxy have also been linked.

Monaco coach Claudio Ranieri took the England international to Chelsea from West Ham in 2001 and is thought to be keen on a reunion with the 34-year-old midfielder.

However, Monaco have played down reported interest, with a club official telling L'Equipe: "There is nothing concrete."

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