Steven Gerrard has warned Frank Lampard to be prepared for “war” when the two former England team-mates go head to head in MLS on Sunday.
The midfield duo enjoyed numerous battles in their respective roles at Liverpool and Chelsea, with Gerrard’s LA Galaxy against Lampard’s New York City set to be the latest showdown between the pair.
And Gerrard, who sought to play down the focus on his personal duel with Lampard, insists there will be no room for sentiment at the StubHub Center this weekend.
“I’m sure Frank agrees it’s slightly embarrassing to have all the focus on you when it’s Los Angeles Galaxy versus New York,” he said.
“It’s about the game and the three points. But we understand it – we’ve played together for so many years. [The rivalry] it’s real. When that whistle goes and we’re competing for 90 minutes against each other, it’s war.
“We fight against each other, we always have. When the whistle goes to finish there’s a mutual respect there. We’ve always got on off the pitch regardless of what other people say.
“So if Frank plays from the beginning or if he comes on we become enemies, and when the game’s over we become friends again.
“I’ve got nothing but respect and admiration for him as a player. We’re both winners we’re both professional. But he’s coming into town for three points and I want the three points to stay here so that’s where the rivalry begins.”
Galaxy are the favourites as they sit top of the Western Conference, while City are eighth in the Eastern.
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