ONE of the first things Frank Lampard did on setting his Chelsea goalscoring record was to call the man who previously held it.
In the moments after leaving the Villa Park pitch on Saturday, his two goals having secured a new club record of 203, he made straight for a quiet corner of the dressing room to call Bobby Tambling.
Tambling, whose 202 goals in blue had stood as a club record for 43 years, followed the game from his home in Ireland – where he is recovering after a debilitating illness.
Speaking less than an hour after finally achieving the coveted record, Lampard said: “I've spoken to (Tambling) already, actually.
“Him and his wife have been a huge support to me throughout. Kerry Dixon as well – those are the two I've managed to jump over.
“But Bobby is an absolute gentleman: he supports from afar. He's coming over this week for our player of the year dinner, and I look forward to sitting down and having a beer or a glass of wine with him, and having a proper chat for half an hour Because he has supported me all the way.
“I couldn't have jumped over a better man than him.”
Lampard said he was still coming to terms with the record: which is likely to set him in stone forever as one of Chelsea's true legends.
“It's bit surreal,” he said. “I've been here along time, and never believed I would get anywhere near that.
“So to actually get there over the years, and actually sit on top in terms of goals is just amazing. I can't quite get my head around it at the minute.”