The former Chelsea star netted his second goal in as many games in Saturday's 2-0 victory at the Seattle Sounders, but there was some debate over whether his effort should have counted.
After opening his account for the season in last weekend’s 3-2 home win over the Philadelphia Union, the former Chelsea midfielder made it two goals in two games when he gave NYCFC the lead 38 minutes into the match after getting onto the end of a cross from R.J. Allen and bundling the ball past Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei.
His strike was a controversial one, however, as the replays seemed to indicate that the ex-England international handled the ball as he turned towards goal.
Lampard’s highly debated effort did not end up deciding the game, however, as Costa Rican left-back Ronald Matarrita went on to add a second three minutes from time to secure NYFC a second straight win and a league-high fourth away victory.
“It was a very, very good win,” Lampard told nycfc.com after the match. “We’re all very happy in there because I think as a team the way we played, the way we had possession in the first half, the goals we scored, the chances we created and the way we defended made for a very complete performance from all of us.”
Head coach Patrick Vieira added on his side’s impressive road record: “I think it’s because we commit and are working hard. We respect our game plan and we didn’t give them any chance to really develop their game.
“I was really pleased because it’s not an easy place to come and score two goals then go back to New York with no goals conceded.”
Lampard, who turned 38 earlier this week, was making just his fifth appearance and second start of the season at Seattle after missing NYCFC’s opening 12 games with a nagging calf strain, but he managed to last until the 84th-minute before being substituted.
The Chelsea legend looked sharp on the day, too, completing 86 percent of his 50 passes and recording four shots, and he believes is fitness is now finally close to where it needs to be.
“I feel good,” he added to nycfc.com. “I’m getting towards 100 percent. It takes a couple of appearances, but to say in two starts I’d get two goals to help us win games is great.
“Personally I feel good, but it’s even better to be part of a winning team and come all the way to Seattle – a difficult stadium, difficult team and difficult turf – and play the way we did.”
Saturday’s result means NYCFC move up to second place in the Eastern Conference on 24 points – two behind first-placed Philadelphia, having earned six wins, six draws and suffered five defeats in their first 17 games of the season.
They now prepare to host crosstown rivals New York Red Bulls next Sunday, when they will be looking to make amends for last month’s dismal 7-0 loss to the 2015 Supporters’ Shield winners.