JT: Chelsea’s Best Ever Defender – But Should They Keep Him?
John Terry has been a pillar of Chelsea football club for the past 18 years. The East London boy made his debut at the tender age of 17 and has been at the club his entire career (bar one brief loan spell in Nottingham.) He has been captain of the club during Chelsea’s most successful ever period. However, now coming into his late thirties, is it time Chelsea’s No.26 moved on?
Terry has always liked to have his contract sorted by January, so naturally when it was not renewed this year it looked like he was leaving. However, an upturn in form plus the arrival of a new manager may yet breathe new life into Terry’s career.
Why He Should Stay
Chelsea through and through, always willing to put himself on the line for his club, a fan at heart. That desire and dedication can breathe through a team and inspire younger players. It would be especially helpful for a manager to have a player who knows the club inside out as Antonio Conte looks to bed in.
Terry is still one of the best centre backs at Chelsea if not the country. He has a fantastic ability to read the game and is absolutely fearless in a one-on-one. His heading ability is second to none, both at defending and in the opposition box. He has 66 Chelsea goals to his name and is the top scoring defender in Premier League history with 40 goals. This is even more incredible when you consider that JT has taken no penalties during his time at the Bridge.
With so many big players leaving Chelsea in the past four years he is the last member of Jose Mourinho’s double winning team. He knows how to win which is an essential attribute for any player in a top team. That mentality will be essential when building a new team as Antonio Conte must do, he must also help the new players as they come in and slowly but surely distribute some of the influence he has in the dressing room.
Why Should He Go
He is a terrific defender, one of the best at Chelsea. Yet his form has dropped significantly since the 2014/15 season. He played every single minute of the Premier League campaign when Chelsea were crowned champions, yet he has struggled this season and was dropped by Jose at the start of the season.
There are also weaknesses in his game. At 35 going on 36 he will no longer have the ability to play twice a week and lacks the speed that he had in his younger days. Terry is also prone to error and can sometimes struggle against some of the top class more sophisticated centre forwards. He also has a nasty streak to his game and can too easily get aggravated, resulting in a red. Think back to the semi-final against Barcelona, specifically the incident with Alexis Sanchez.
If Terry does stay at the club it could have a negative effect on new players or younger players making their breakthrough. Sometimes for big players they can be intimidating or stagnate other players progress. His presence could work both ways in terms of positivity or negativity.
There is no doubting that Terry has been a fantastic servant to Chelsea and will always be fondly remembered at the club. But Chelsea will be heavily backed in the summer as Antonio Conte comes in, they are already one of the favourites for the title. It remains to be seen just how much of an impact Terry will have next season.