Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 1/2/13
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Chelsea is breaking up its vaunted “Old Guard,” and Manchester United is willing to help the process. The Premier League leader wants to bring Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole to Old Trafford from Chelsea. United manager Sir Alex Ferguson thinks the influential veterans have a lot to offer in the latter stages of their careers, according to the Daily Star. “Starsport understands the Scot even considered trying to sign the pair during this month’s transfer window, but Chelsea are unwilling to do business with any other Premier League clubs. “So Fergie is prepared to wait until the summer, when he will offer the duo one-year rolling contracts which will allow them to continue playing at the highest level.” Lampard has been a standout since joining the club in 2001, but his contract expires in June and it’s almost certain that Chelsea won’t offer him a new deal. Cole has been an ever-present figure in the Chelsea defense since 2006. His contract also expires in the summer. Chelsea reportedly offered Cole a one-year extension, but he has no interest in a short-term deal. Both players are among other clubs’ rumored transfer targets. Lampard has been linked with a move to Queens Park Rangers, the L.A. Galaxy and clubs in China. Cole is reportedly in the sights of Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid. If the rumor is true and United’s interest is concrete, Lampard and Cole would have to trade long-term security for a unique opportunity. Lampard, 34, and Cole, 32, ooze big-game experience. Although they might not be automatic starters at United, the club would benefit from their presence and they would have the opportunity to contribute to a club at the top level. Ferguson has used Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes, 39 and 38 respectively, to great effect in recent seasons. United’s old guard sets a shining example for the club’s young players with their professional approach. Lampard and Cole could follow in that tradition, having won a total of 20 major trophies with Chelsea in the last decade. Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich may not have much use for the veterans and he’s ready to discard them. Don’t put it past Ferguson to pick them up and turn the Chelsea stars into United treasures. Have a question for Marcus Kwesi O’Mard? Send it to him via Twitter at @NESNsoccer, NESN Soccer’s Facebook page or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag. Photo via Facebook/We want to stay Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole at Chelsea
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