Lochte believes Phelps will be back for Rio Olympics
The 11-times Olympic medallist Ryan Lochte has predicted the 18-times champion Michael Phelps will return to compete at the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016.
Phelps retired this summer after a final campaign in London which saw him end his career with 22 Olympic medals, having overtaken the Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina’s record of 18.
Phelps was adamant that London, his fourth Olympics, would be his final event but his close friend and rival Lochte, speaking ahead of the World Short Course Championships in Istanbul, believes he could well return.
“Michael Phelps says he’s retired,” Lochte said. “The sport will miss him, he is one of my favourite rivals and I will miss him. But I think he will come back. When you do something for so long every day . . . he’s still young. I think he will be back for Rio.”