Things took an unexpected twist on Friday at Stamford Bridge when it was revealed that John Terry had been offered a new one year contract.
It’s been an ongoing joke for months for both player and club; following Chelsea’s 5-1 win in the FA Cup fourth round over MK Dons at the end of January it was confirmed hours after, that the club’s most successful captain was not going to be handed a contract extension.
The announcement was met with anger and bemusement from Chelsea supporters, you would’ve thought that the club would’ve learnt from the mistakes of letting the likes of Frank Lampard, Petr Cech and Ashley Cole go too early, especially after the campaign Chelsea have had where it’s been clear to see that a lack of leadership has been at the forefront of the mess that’s unravelled this term.
The speculation quietened down, although sections of Chelsea supporters made their voices heard at Liverpool on Wednesday night with John Terry’s name being sung on the 26th minute as well as a banner being displayed signifying the trophies he’s won at the club.
Plenty expected last Saturday’s game at Sunderland to be his last, a dour ending to his Chelsea career after being sent off following two yellows however it seems as though the Chelsea hierarchy have made a U-turn.
You wonder if Chelsea even want John Terry or is this just a publicity stunt, the club have gone public in confirming that they have offered Terry a new deal but surely terms within the contract have been severely reduced so whether he accepts or rejects the deal the club will be hoping that they’ll be exonerated simply by offering.
But should it be a must that Chelsea kept him in the first place?
The joke of this all isn’t the fact Chelsea have gone back on their word from January, but the decision in the first place to even consider letting one of their most valuable players leave the club.
At the age of 35 Terry still is the club’s best defender, in Gary Cahill and Kurt Zouma they have adequate replacements although they are a far stronger side with their captain at the heart of the defence.
In a campaign where Chelsea have failed to replicate their title winning form of last season, it’s been evident that there is a lack of character, fight, determination and drive in the side, all qualities that Terry has in abundance.
If he does decide to accept the deal he’ll no doubt be a key member of the team for Antonio Conte who will be relying on his experience and leadership to guide him in his first spell in England, as well as helping Chelsea get back to the top end of the table.
I could bore you to death about his how fantastic he’s been since he made his debut against Aston Villa in 1998 or the amount of trophies he’s won but to the club, it means much more but just as important is how he bridges the gap between the club and the fans. In a world where the disparity between those playing for the club and us watching from the stands grows by the day, Terry has filled the void. He is a link to the club we fell in love with, earning his stripes cleaning Dennis Wise’s boots.
His heartfelt speech on the pitch yesterday was cryptic and didn’t let on that he would be staying or going – just that he wants to stay, confirming that perhaps there are still some wrinkles in the deal to be ironed out. But it’s vitally important that the club keep him for as long as they possibly can, his qualities are invaluable and hopefully he can help the next captain of the football club to inherit his ethos for the coming years when he does depart.
We’ve been told he’s considering the offer Chelsea put to him, despite this circus act by the club once more it’s certainly made them fully aware of the importance John Terry still has at the football club.
Written by George, who can be found on Twitter @GClarke_