Lampard relishing chance to challenge Klopp after Liverpool extension
Jurgen Klopp's contract extension at Liverpool pleased his Chelsea counterpart Frank Lampard, who still hopes to "bridge the gap" to the Premier League leaders.
Klopp, who joined Liverpool in 2015, already had a contract at Anfield until 2022, but the Reds managed to secure his long-term future early with Friday's announcement of the new four-and-half-year deal.
It was a just reward for reinvigorating Liverpool, who are a genuine force again both in Europe and the Premier League, having lifted the Champions League trophy last term before dashing to the top of the domestic table this season.
After 16 matches, Liverpool have dropped just two points and are eight clear of second-placed Leicester City at the summit, with Klopp transforming the team into a winning machine with few – if any – notable weaknesses.
As Klopp and Liverpool set the standard, Lampard acknowledged Chelsea have work to do but is looking forward to continuing to take on the German.
"Liverpool are a huge rival now anyway," Lampard told reporters on Friday. "What they've done in recent years…
"Recruitment, their style of play, what Jurgen Klopp has built over a period of a few years is incredible.
"So, congratulations on the new contract. It's fully deserved, that's for sure. They will remain a huge competitor.
"I love going up against the managers of the quality and name of Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola. You go through the Premier League and there's so many great managers here, so I'm pleased, I'm not disappointed.
"The challenge for us is can we bridge the gap to Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp or no Jurgen Klopp, but congrats on his new contract."