John Terry: 10 Reasons Chelsea Fans Should Be in His Corner
With the offseason underway, it's easy for Chelsea fans to lose perspective.
In order to prevent that, I'm issuing a statement that I hope everyone agrees with: Chelsea need John Terry.
Now, a few weeks ago, I wrote an article about how Terry should be stripped of his captaincy. I was frustrated after the Barcelona draw, and I couldn't believe he could act so stupidly.
Now, after lifting the Champions League trophy and losing Didier Drogba, it's clear that Chelsea pride is about more than little moments. It's bigger than that.
Terry exemplifies how much bigger things are than just little moments. We need to appreciate and support him as long as he remains with the club. Here are the 10 biggest reasons Chelsea fans love Terry.
When John Terry's on the pitch, there's no doubting his leadership ability.
His teammates flock to him, and they take in every word he says. Good players recognize greatness, and they recognize it in their captain.
While Terry is a horrible role model off the field, every youngster could learn a thing or two about how Terry leads men. As Chelsea try to transition into a bright future, having a leader like Terry will be a great asset.
When John Terry's on the pitch, Chelsea's defense is in better shape.
He makes great tackles, challenges for the ball in the air and intercepts passes as well as anyone. He is one of the most complete defenders a coach could ask for.
No, Terry isn't as good as he once was. However, at 31, he still has plenty left in the tank to play at a high level.
There's no questioning John Terry's desire to win.
At times, it can be detrimental, but for the most part, Terry's drive has made him a better player. He wants to win every match, and he wants to do it by any means necessary.
Terry played the last few months of the season with broken ribs. He was hurting every time he moved, every time he breathed. Still, he gutted it out and helped his team win two trophies.
Say what you want about his decision-making, but there's no doubting Terry's passion for the game.
When things were going wrong for Chelsea, it was easy to blame John Terry's ego.
Many people thought he had too much control of the dressing room, and he was the reason Andre Villas-Boas was run out of town. That's probably true, but that doesn't mean it's necessarily a bad thing. Villas-Boas alienated the old guard, and that type of transition would not go over well at any club.
Terry, though, always tried to command his defense. He understands tactics, and he knows how to win in the Premier League. With him on the pitch, it's like Chelsea has two coaches.
And, yes, that's a good thing.
John Terry has been the captain at Chelsea for eight seasons (and a little more), and he has won a dozen trophies in that time.
Aside from his penalty miss in 2008, Terry has had some great performances in big games. Chelsea always have a tremendous amount of pressure, but the club, and Terry, usually rise to the occasion.
When I think of English football, Terry is one of the first players that comes to mind: a tough, smart winner (at the club level).
John Terry is surprisingly good moving forward.
He has scored multiple league goals in each of the last three seasons, including six this year. If you include his numbers for England, Terry has put the ball in the net more than 50 times in his career.
That's pretty impressive for a centre-back known for his tackling and toughness.
He may not have the most finesse moving forward, but Terry is usually good for a bruising header or trailing tap-in at some point during the season.
Love for Chelsea
There's no doubt that John Terry loves Chelsea.
He wears the armband with pride, and he understands what it means to be a Blue.
Terry has given his entire adult life and senior career to Chelsea. Ever since he was a teenager, he's been bleeding Blue.
Terry "gets it." He understands that football is more than just skills. It's more than just money. It's more than just a game. It's a love for what you're doing.
More importantly, it's a love for whom you're doing it for.
With John Terry as skipper, Chelsea have had a swagger about them. His intelligent, bruising play helped give the club an identity. With help from Jose Mourinho, Chelsea suddenly became bullies.
You never knew when Terry might come in with a little extra shove to make sure you felt the foul. He didn't let finesse players off the hook. Instead, Terry punished them for entire matches, usually with a booking and nothing else.
Sometimes, his shaky temperament got the best of him, but when he was playing under control, Terry struck fear in opponents.
There is not a tougher player in the world than John Terry.
He played the last few months of the season with broken ribs, but that's nothing compared to his history.
Terry played in the 2008 Champions League Final shortly after partially dislocating his elbow. In 2007, he was kicked in the face (no link, the video freaks me out too much) and was unconscious for several minutes. After being taken to the hospital, he discharged himself and returned to celebrate with the team.
His body will never thank him, but the club will always be grateful for Terry's toughness.
I could sing John Terry's praises (as a player) all day, but they can be summed up in one word: legend.
That's what Terry is. That's how immense he's been for Chelsea in his career.
He's a talented player. He's a polarizing figure. He's put together an incredible career.
When you add all that up, you have one of the all-time greats. Terry has put in a great career, and it's far from over. He has always impressed, and he will continue to do so.
That's just what legends do.