With Week 6 of MLS play kicking off this weekend, New York City FC’s Frank Lampard is still waiting for his first minutes of the season – and they won’t be coming this week.
The 37-year-old midfielder has been ruled out of action again due to calf strain that flared up during preseason. This will be NYCFC’s fifth straight match without the ex-England international and their second this season against the Chicago Fire without him.
“He’s not going to be fit for the weekend,” NYCFC head coach Patrick Vieira told reporters. “I think we’re a couple of days away from his comeback, so he’s not going to be fit for this weekend.”
The string of misses carries over a 2015 campaign where injury also hindered Lampard and he scored three goals in 10 appearances.
Vieira added that while the injury to his Designated Player isn’t ideal for roster selection, the time off is just as difficult for Lampard.
“I’m feeling for him because he’s a real champion and a true champion and he’s going through a difficult period because, of course, he wants to be on the field, he wants to train, and he wants to help the team,” the coach added.
NYCFC goes into this weekend sitting in fifth place in the Eastern Conference at five points. They host the Fire on Sunday (7 pm ET; FS1), who sit just below them in the standings but tied on points.