Frank Lampard said it will be “huge” for him to have a preseason with NYCFC for the first time as he gets ready for the 2016 MLS season. On Tuesday he said the toughest part of arriving midseason last year was being injured and then rushing back too fast, only to miss more games. After NYCFC’s fits and starts on the field in 2015, Lampard called it a “warm-up year” and said in ’16 “there will be no excuses” for missing the playoffs again.
The key, Lampard said, will be getting off to a winning start and not having to play catch-up like last year. He called new NYCFC coach Patrick Vieira a world-class player who paid his dues as a coach of the elite development squad at Man City—as opposed to finishing his playing career and wanting to instantly step into a head coaching job somewhere.
“With Patrick he’ll bring his experience and know-how from working in Manchester,” Lampard said. “I saw that when I was there. We’ll take in his ideas. It’s a long preseason, and we’ll try to get the team together.”