Ex-Liverpool man Lambert reveals he fell out of love with football after Reds switch

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The striker, who recently decided to call time on his career, says he was mentally affected after joining his boyhood club in 2014

Former Liverpool striker Rickie Lambert says he lost his love for football after moving to Anfield in 2014.

The striker, 35, recently called time on a great career which saw him rise from the lower leagues to the Premier League and England recognition.

Such was Lambert's consistency in front of goal for Southampton, netting 117 goals in all competitions for the Saints, that he attracted the interest of his boyhood club Liverpool, joining them in 2014.

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However, the ex-Three Lions international featured sparingly for the Reds, scoring just three goals in his only season at Anfield before moving to West Bromwich Albion in 2015.

And Lambert believes he “lost something mentally” by accepting a bit-part role at Liverpool when his career was its best point.

In an interview with the Daily Mail, he said: "I was getting well paid but I never started playing football for the money.

“And when I decided to go to Liverpool I sacrificed a regular first-team place and that was when I started to fall out of love with it.

“I never should have accepted being on the bench, even though Brendan Rodgers had made it clear to me I would be back-up for Suarez and Sturridge.

“I was never as quick or as technically good as the best players, but in my own head, when it came to actually playing, I could convince myself I was the best.

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“But when I joined up with England I felt lucky to be there, and it was the same at Liverpool.

“And when I look back now I realise I lost something mentally as a player by allowing that to happen.”

Lambert made 36 appearances for Liverpool in all competitions while earning 11 caps for England, scoring three times for his country.

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