The ex-Chelsea midfielder is still waiting for his first minutes this season due to a nagging calf strain.
Lampard, 37, missed NYCFC’s first four games of the campaign after picking up a calf strain during preseason, but Vieira had hoped that he would return in time to face the Fire this weekend at Yankee Stadium.
However, the Chelsea legend is now set to miss a fifth straight match, with his manager revealing that he is instead targeting the following weekend’s trip to Columbus Crew SC for his first run-out of 2016.
He’s not going to be fit for the weekend,” Vieira told SBISoccer.com “I think we’re a couple of days away from his comeback, so he’s not going to be fit for this weekend.
“When you’re talking about a player of his calibre, it’s always good and better to have him to be available to play games. 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.”
Lampard also missed several games with the same calf problem over the second half of last season following his summer arrival, making just 10 appearances and scoring three goals as NYCFC finished their inaugural season with a disappointing eighth-place finish in the Eastern Conference.
With Vieira since replacing Jason Kreis at the helm, the club have taken five points from their opening four games this term in the former England international’s absence, scoring seven goals and conceding the same amount.
Their only win came on the opening day when they beat the Fire 4-3 at Toyota Park, leaving them fifth in the East going into the weekend’s rematch against Veljko Paunovic’s side.