John Terry ready for next step after confirming Chelsea exit

Date published: Monday 17th April 2017 7:46

John Terry insists he still has “plenty to offer” the game despite confirming he will, once and for all, leave Chelsea in the summer.

The 36-year-old will end a 22-year association with the Blues when his contract expires, having won 14 major honours at Stamford Bridge since making his first-team debut in 1998.

Terry has been a bit-part player this season, featuring in just five Premier League games for Antonio Conte’s league leaders.

The Chelsea captain was linked with a January move to Bournemouth due to his lack of game-time but he remained in west London.

Terry has not featured since a 2-0 FA Cup win over Wolves in February, with his last league appearance coming in November.

Other than a loan spell at Nottingham Forest, Terry has never turned out for another side and has racked up more than 700 appearances at Chelsea.

But now the former England skipper is ready to move on, even if he admits he is unsure what his future holds at this point.

“I will decide on my future in due course, but for now I am committed to helping the team achieve success this season,” he said.

‘After 22 years there is so much to say and so many people to thank at this great football club. From coaches, team-mates and staff to the fans who have given me so much support down the years, I can’t thank you enough.

“There will be opportunities for me to speak further about this over the coming weeks.

“I feel I still have plenty to offer on the pitch but understand that opportunities here at Chelsea will be limited for me.

“I’m eager to carry on playing and so will be looking to continue with a new challenge.

“I will of course always be a Blue and am desperate to end my final season as a Chelsea player with more silverware.”

Terry has lifted four Premier League titles during his time in west London as well as five FA Cups and a hat-trick of League Cups.

He also won the Europa League under Rafael Benitez and lifted the Champions League trophy in 2012 despite being suspended for the final against Bayern Munich.

In announcing his decision to leave, Terry suggested he will one day return to Stamford Bridge.

“The club and I have always had a fantastic relationship, which will continue beyond my playing days,” he added.

“We had some really positive talks but with everything taken into careful consideration I have decided it’s the right time for me to leave.

“I’ve always been conscious that I depart at the right time, in the right way, and I feel that the end of this season is the right time for the club and I.”

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Terry was named PFA Player of the Year in 2005 and collected 78 England caps before retiring from the international scene.

His future at Chelsea was always in doubt after Conte reverted to a back three, with David Luiz, Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta the Italian’s preferred trio.

Since reverting to the system, Chelsea have marched towards the title – only to be halted in recent weeks.

They were surprisingly beaten at home by Crystal Palace at the start of April before losing 2-0 at Manchester United on Sunday.

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That defeat means Tottenham are now just four points behind their London rivals in second place and Cahill was left angry following the setback at Old Trafford.

”We didn’t click,” he told ”It’s disappointing.

“We tried to work hard in the second half, tried to push and create, but we were below the standards we’ve set.

”We weren’t at the races and it makes us a bit angry. Let’s hope it’s an off day and it doesn’t cost us too much.

”We expected them to start fast and we had to try and control that, and we never did.”


John Terry’s next move bettings odds (via William Hill)

John Terry next club: 4/5 any MLS club; 4/1 any Chinese club; 7/1 Bournemouth; 8/1 Brighton; 12/1 Crystal Palace; 16/1 Everton; 16/1 Southampton; 16/1 Watford; 25/1 Manchester United; 33/1 Arsenal

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