Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho has conceded Frank Lampard is unlikely to move to the San Siro for another year.
The Italian champions have been linked with the 30-year-old England international all summer but no deal has been reached, and the Portuguese admits the transfer will now be 'difficult' to complete.
Instead, he believes Lampard is more likely to move on a free transfer if and when his Stamford Bridge contract expires next summer.
'For Lampard, it will be easier to play with Chelsea until the end of his contract rather than break it now, all of a sudden,' said the former Chelsea boss.
'It seems to me difficult for him to be able to come here now, it's easier that he comes next season.'