Tuesday 22 August 2017

Terry vows to play on after decision to end 22-year stay at Chelsea

Terry has helped inspire Chelsea to 14 major trophies, including the Champions League and four Premier League titles during his 19 first-team seasons at the club. Photo: PA
Terry has helped inspire Chelsea to 14 major trophies, including the Champions League and four Premier League titles during his 19 first-team seasons at the club. Photo: PA

Jeremy Wilson

John Terry is ready to consider lucrative playing offers in China and America, as well as Europe, after Chelsea announced that the most successful captain in their history would be leaving at the end of the season.

Terry has helped inspire Chelsea to 14 major trophies, including the Champions League and four Premier League titles during his 19 first-team seasons at the club, but has made just 10 appearances this season under Antonio Conte.

A future offer to return to Chelsea in a non-playing capacity has already been outlined but, at the age of 36, Terry wants to seek a new on-field challenge. Terry had signed a series of one-year contracts over recent seasons but had to wait until last May before being offered a new deal.

There has already been strong interest from Shanghai Shenhua, where his former team-mate Gus Poyet is head coach; Bournemouth and West Brom were interested in taking him on loan during the January transfer window.

Earn

However, it is understood that Terry could earn as much as £20m in a single season in China, where he famously visited Guangzhou in the summer of 2015 as part of what was called the 'JT Captain China Tour'.

Major League Soccer, where Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and David Beckham all ended their careers, will be another consideration, and there is also interest in Turkey.

Read more: John Terry to consider offers from China and America after Chelsea confirm captain will leave at end of season

Terry's departure represents the end of an era at Chelsea, where he has been the dominant dressing-room figure throughout the entire Roman Abramovich period. He is third on the club's all-time appearance list with 713 games and captained Chelsea a record 578 times.

"After 22 years there is so much to say and so many people to thank at this great football club," said Terry. "I will decide on my future in due course, but for now I am committed to helping the team achieve success this season.

"The club and I have always had a fantastic relationship, which will continue beyond my playing days. 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 feel I still have plenty to offer on the pitch but understand that opportunities here 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 always be a Blue and am desperate to end my final season with more silverware." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport