Chelsea have announced that long-serving captain John Terry will bring an end to his 22-year career at Stamford Bridge during the off-season.
The 36-year-old centre-back is a product of the club’s youth system, having gone on to make his first-team debut in 1998 and wore the armband for the first time in 2001.
Terry skippered the Blues to the Premier League title in 2005, the first of four top-flight successes, while he also won the Uefa Champions League with the west Londoners in 2012.
However, the former England international has become a bit-part player under Antonio Conte this term, making just five league appearances and 10 in total.
The veteran defender is hoping to sign off in style by helping Conte’s side lift the league trophy in May, should the Italian call on him in the final six games, but has no plans to retire yet just.
“After 22 years there is so much to say and so many people to thank at this great football club,” Terry said in a statement.
“From coaches, team-mates and staff to the fans who have given me so much support down the years, I can’t thank you enough. There will be opportunities for me to speak further about this over the coming weeks.
“I will decide on my future in due course, but for now I am committed to helping the team achieve success this season.
“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.
“I’ve always been conscious that I depart at the right time, in the right way, and I feel that the end of this season is the right time for the club and I.
“I feel I still have plenty to offer on the pitch but understand that opportunities here at Chelsea will be limited for me. I’m eager to carry on playing and so will be looking to continue with a new challenge.
“I will of course always be a Blue and am desperate to end my final season as a Chelsea player with more silverware.”