Former Chelsea and England captain, John Terry has announced his retirement from active football.
The 37-year-old, who left Aston Villa in the summer called time on a 23-year career that saw him winning five Premier League titles, four FA Cups, the Champions League, Europa League and three League Cups with Chelsea.
In an emotional farewell message which he posted on his Instagram page on Sunday, Terry extended his appreciation to his family and friends for their unalloyed support throughout his playing days.
“After 23 incredible years as a footballer, I have decided now is the right time to retire from playing. As a 14-year-old, I made the biggest and best decision; to sign for Chelsea. Words will never be enough to show how much everyone at the club means to me, in particular the fans.
“To me, you are the best fans in the world. I hope I have done you all proud wearing the shirt and the armband.
“I want to thank my amazing team-mates, coaches, managers and backroom staff, who I was honoured to work with and learn from.
“They all guided me on my way to playing 717 games for the club I love and it was a privilege to serve them as captain. I look forward to the next chapter in my life and the challenges in my head,” he posted.
After he joined the Blues at 14 years old, Terry became the West London club’s most successful captain. He also captained the English national football team where he earned 78 caps in all, featuring at four major tournaments but failing to progress beyond the quarter-finals.
Terry, who left Chelsea in 2017 to join Aston Villa has not played for anyone else since his contract expired with the Championship club at the end of last season, having rejected a move to join Russia’s Spartak Moscow in the summer.
Reports says Terry is being lined up as a possible assistant manager or first-team coach to Thierry Henry at Aston Villa, with the ex-Arsenal and Barcelona star the prime candidate to succeed Steve Bruce.