Frank Lampard has revealed how close he came to joining Jose Mourinho at Inter Milan after the death of his mother.
The England midfielder shared a close relationship with Mourinho and was tempted to follow the Portuguese to the San Siro 18 months ago.
Lampard eventually signed a new five-year contract worth £150,000 a week at Stamford Bridge and, as he prepares to face Mourinho's Inter in the Champions League, says he now can't imagine playing for anyone else.
'At the time, if I am honest about it, I did have thoughts about going to Inter,' Lampard told Chelsea TV.
'It was a difficult time for me in my life, things had happened for me personally and everybody knows how I feel about Jose Mourinho.'
It is almost two years since Lampard was hit hard by the loss of his 58-year-old mother Pat to pneumonia. Then in February last year, Lampard split from fiancee Elen Rives.
Boy done good: Lampard lines up against his former side West Ham, vying for the ball with Mark Noble
'It was never a case of wanting to leave Chelsea to go to a team in England, that would be impossible for me,' he continued. 'I'd like to finish my career here now without a doubt, but then I didn't know quite what I wanted to do.
'I thought maybe it was something I could do as a different path in my life but it is the best thing I have done, not going to Inter, because once I got my head straight I realised what I wanted to do and realised what Chelsea have given me.
'I'll never forget what my Mum and my Dad said to me all the time, "don't forget when you walk away from the ground everyone is singing your name, don't forget what these people have given to a West Ham boy moving across London". That kind of thing made me think and I am positive that I made the right decision.
Family album: Baby Frank with his dad, former West Ham star Frank Lampard Snr, and his mother Pat
'My family always wanted me to stay at Chelsea. A lot of things had happened in my life and I was thinking, do I want to get away from it? It would have been the wrong decision.
'Inter Milan are a fantastic club with a great manager but they are not Chelsea and now I feel Chelsea is part of me.
Bond: Mourinho comforts Lampard after Chelsea's 2-1 defeat by Liverpool in the FA Cup semi-final at Old Trafford four years ago
'I am very pleased now that I can finish my career here and looking back I would have hated to have left after a few years having done well but not done the whole package. Now hopefully I can do that.'
Lampard had been a doubt for the Champions League last 16, first leg showdown at the San Siro on Wednesday after being struck down with a virus. However, the 31-year-old has been declared fit to join the squad.
Lampard won two League titles under Mourinho, but he believes thearrival of Carlo Ancelotti has given Chelsea the best chance of liftingthe one trophy to elude him so far, the Champions League.
'The thing that is similar in their styles as managers is that they both build a good bond with the team,' said Lampard.
'You will always find that if managers get that bond with players they will get the best out of them.
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'It is very important that when we work, we work hard and Ancelotti is very strong on that too. When we're off the pitch he's someone you talk to about anything you want and you're not scared of him. Everyone at Chelsea relates to that.'
Lampard believes Didier Drogba holds the key to beating the Serie A champions.
The Ivory Coast striker had his best goalscoring campaign in Mourinho's last full season in England - netting 33 times in 2006-07 - but is on course to beat it this term after notching 25.
'He's the best and his all-round game is fantastic,' said Lampard. 'Wayne Rooney is the only one that touches him and they're head to head in the battle for best player of the season.
'When he is as good as he was against Arsenal, Cardiff and Wolves there is no one better.'
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