Frank Lampard, the Chelsea midfielder, attributed his recent injury lay-off caused by groin problems to pushing himself too hard in training. The England international, 32, returned in mid-December after missing more than three-and-a-half months of the season. "It was a bad injury. I was expecting it to be a few weeks and then I went to see someone who told me it was a three-month injury," said Lampard, who was initially hurt in training while recovering from a hernia operation. "It wasn't mis-diagnosed, it was more my fault. With hindsight I would have done a lot more resting." Lampard said he would need to put in extra leg strengthening work for the rest of his career in order to stay match fit. "I have a weakness there. My tendon came off the bone and it doesn't go back, you just have to stay very strong in the area."
David Moyes has moved to end talk of his Everton captain Phil Neville joining Tottenham Hotspur. Reports yesterday linked Neville with a move to London, with Harry Redknapp, the Spurs manager, later acknowledging his admiration of the player. But Moyes, the Everton manager, told his club's official website: "I spoke with Harry Redknapp briefly before the transfer window opened. Daniel Levy [the Tottenham chairman] and Bill [Kenwright, the Everton chairman] had an even briefer conversation at our recent game against Spurs and mutually agreed that this would go no further. At no time was any offer made - nor would one have been welcomed. Phil Neville is our captain and is an important part of the Everton set-up."
David Beckham was all smiles as he trained with Tottenham for the first time yesterday. The Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder was given the green light to join in with the Spurs squad after completing a series of fitness tests at the club's training ground in Chigwell, Essex. It is understood Beckham is keen to play for Tottenham before returning to the Galaxy before their first match of the new Major League Soccer season against the Seattle Sounders on March 15. As things stand, Beckham will only be at the club to train until February 10, with Los Angeles said to be concerned over insurance issues should their midfielder suffer another injury like he did when on loan at AC Milan ahead of the World Cup.
Per Mertesacker, the Werder Bremen centre-back, is not listening to any offers, amid reported interest from the Premier League for his services. The Germany international insists now is not the time to discuss his own personal future and, even if Arsenal are keen on him, he does not want to know anything about it. "We are in a difficult moment with Werder and we should not be talking about me at this time," he told the Kreiszeitung newspaper. "I am needed here for our day-to-day work and it is my duty to concentrate on that. I cannot deal with anything else."
Dan Gosling will take his first step on the road towards a first-team comeback with a friendly appearance for Newcastle tonight. The 20-year-old midfielder joined the club last summer, but has yet to play a minute for them owing to a cruciate ligament injury he picked up while he was with Everton. But he will line-up against Scottish side Hibernian at the club's training ground tomorrow, hoping to put himself in manager Alan Pardew's thoughts. He told his club's official website: "I've been looking forward to a game for a few months now so I can't wait. The snow has halted my progress lately, but I feel good now."