John Terry announced his departure from Chelsea at the end of the season last night in an emotional post on the club’s official website.
Terry’s departure comes after over two decades at the club, in which he became The Blue’s most decorated ever player, having won four Premier Leagues, five FA Cups and three League Cups. He also has Champion’s League and Europa League medals. In total, Terry has made a phenomenal 713 appearances in a Chelsea shirt, and scored 66 times.
“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.” 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 announcement has sparked rumours about where the veteran defender’s future may lie. A number of Premier League clubs – including West Brom and Manchester United – are said to be interested, while a move to either the MLS or the Chinese Super League may also be on the cards.
While fans will be sad to see their captain leave the club, it appears the time is right for Terry to leave with opportunities limited in a changing Chelsea side.
Finding a replacement will be no short feat, however with a new stadium planning to be built in the near future, it is unlikely Chelsea will have the transfer resources to spend big on finding a suitable successor, and instead the Blues may have to look at resources already at their disposal.
Terry’s exit could mean these five players benefit at the Bridge …
Andreas Christensen will be given his chance to shine in Southwest London next season, after revealing he will be returning to his parent club in the summer after spending two years on loan with Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach.
The Danish defender has been excellent during his spell on the continent, so much so that ‘Gladbach hoped that they could make the move permanent come the summer. Christensen has been a solid figure at the back this season, missing only five games all season, however hasn’t been able to stop his side from a rather poor domestic season. The Foals currently sit 10th in the table.
A man Ian Wright described as ‘better than any Premier League full-back’ after his performance in the UEFA European Youth Cup final against PSG, Jay DaSilva has a bright future ahead of him. Currently on-loan at Charlton Athletic, the 19-year-old has struggled for opportunity, however has impressed in recent weeks, none more so than last weekend at The Addicks’ beat rivals Gillingham 3-0.
A wing-back by trade, DaSilva will be welcomed back to the Bridge and in the absence of Terry could be given the chance to thrive in what is shaping up to be a youthful Chelsea squad.
John Terry himself named Jake Clarke-Salter as the heir to his throne so to say a couple of years back, so it would only make sense that the youngster would benefit from his exit seeing as it was him he pipped him to do so well.
The defender has won three consecutive Youth Cup’s with Chelsea – an achievement matched only by his team-mate Jay DaSilva and five of Bubsy’s Babes during the 1950’s – and he has already made his senior debut following injury to Kurt Zouma at the back end of last season. Bristol Rovers were benefiting from his services until an unfortunate arm break back in November but it is likely he will return to Chelsea for pre-season.
Ake was recalled from his loan spell at Bournemouth in January after having impressed during his time with the Cherries, who have since struggled at the back without the young Englishman’s prowess. The 22-year-old also impressed last season whilst on-loan at Watford.
It seemed for a long time that Ake was destined to be yet another Chelsea youngster who would spend the entirety of his career on-loan, but having proven over the past 18 months he has the ability to perform at the highest level, John Terry’s departure means it is more likely than ever he will be given his chance.
‘Why would a midfielder benefit from the departure of a centre-back?’ you may ask. John Terry came into the club as a youngster, and his love for Chelsea showed through which is why he eventually went on to become captain, a fan favourite and a club legend.
When looking for a long-term replacement for Terry, not as a defender, but as a captain, it would mean a great deal to the fans to have one of their own succeed him. Loftus-Cheek, despite his limited opportunities thus far under Antonio Conte, has the potential and the ability to be the future of the club.