Frank Lampard has added to the uncertainty over John Terry’s future by admitting he is not sure whether he will stay at Stamford Bridge.
Terry is a target for big-spending Manchester City and has yet to rule out a move to Eastlands even though Chelsea are desperate for him to commit his long-term future to the club.
Lampard, who came close to following former boss Jose Mourinho to Inter Milan last summer, sympathizes with his England colleague and insists he deserves the right to choose where he plays.
He told The Times: “I don’t know what he will do.
“I’ve been in John’s position, but everyone at the club wants him to stay. I had an option to leave last summer, to go with a manager who I love, but it came at a time in my life that, maybe, just wasn’t right.
“But the situation made me think an awful lot. It wasn’t an easy decision, either, and I don’t think people should criticize John.
“People should respect his right to choose.”
City are reported to have put together a five-year package worth £200,000 a week – comfortably more than he earns in west London – but Lampard insists any move would not be motivated by money.
He added: “When you’re a successful player this kind of thing is going to happen and then you have to make a decision. John’s a very honorable man and it doesn’t come down to money and things like that.
“I know John. I know he’ll be thinking about what’s the right thing to do as a player and, in the longer term, for his career. This is not just about the money and people shouldn’t try to make it that black and white.”