Another week into the closed season and the rumour mill has been rife with transfer gossip. The biggest transfer story regarding Aston Villa of the summer so far has arrived this week though. After being photographed playing golf with Steve Bruce there’s now reports from various media outlets that John Terry could sign for Villa.
The former Chelsea captain is available on a free transfer after being released by the club after their title-winning 2016/17 season. Since then there’s been plenty of talk of where the 36-year-old defender could end up plying his trade next season.
As many of you will already be aware, Villa won’t be splashing out as the cash in sums as large as we did last summer due to FIFA Financial Fair Play rules. With Terry being available on a free transfer this could prove to be a great bit of business. He would add depth, experience and even more leadership to the squad without having to spend a penny. This also means that we would have a little extra available to put towards his inevitable high wages.
Last season it became evident that Nathan Baker and James Chester were the starting centre backs for every game given that there weren’t any injuries or suspensions causing havoc. With the other options not really getting a sniff, it’ll be good to have some friendly competition with an extra player fighting for that position.
In the Championship I’d imagine that Terry will definitely want to be starting as many games as possible, this I’d imagine will spur our current centre backs to do more to prove their worth and up their game.
Last season when we signed Tommy Elphick I got very excited by the prospect of a natural born leader and someone who is a solid defender with experience. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out the way I wanted them too with the former Bournemouth skipper. If Terry was to sign for the Villa I’d fully expect him to be everything I wanted Elphick to be.
As is the same with any football player, they hit a certain age and their legs go. The former England captain may struggle to keep up with the pace of the game over the course of 90 minutes of football. Up against an inform, pacey striker such as Tammy Abraham, for example, we could see the experienced defender struggle.
Unfortunately, Terry has an off-field reputation following many mistakes he’s made during his time in the public eye. This tarnishing of his reputation would mean that some fans would be left with a pretty sour taste in their mouths if we are to sign him. Footballers in this day in age are no longer judged purely on footballing ability and with them being role models to so many young people Terry may not be the type of person Villans want their children aspiring to be like.
I personally feel that the former Chelsea skipper only really has one or two years left of his playing career before he decides to call it a day and hang up his boots. Also, he could come into the team and potentially break up the partnership between Nathan Baker and James Chester that was formed last season, by earning himself a spot in the starting 11.
The question has to be asked, is it worth breaking up the current central defensive pairing and possibly stunting any development that the two may make by alongside each other for one, maybe two years of a new but short term defensive partnership?
Terry singing for a championship club may be a long shot with him just winning yet anther Premier League title with his beloved Chelsea and having received interest from other top-flight clubs. With that being said though, he may fancy a different type of challenge. The former England international is a player that’s used to challenging for and winning trophies.
If he goes to another Premier League club I can’t see it being for one the will really challenge for any silverware during the course of the season, but more challenge for league position. Whereas in the Championship there will be a number of clubs who’s target for the season will be to win promotion to the big time but competing one of three things – Winning the league, winning automatic promotion. JT’s love affair with trophies and winning mentality could be what takes him to the Villa who will no doubt have a clear target of winning promotion.
If Villa is to be promoted back to the bright lights of the Premier League this season under Terry’s guidance then he’ll go down as somewhat of a hero with the Villa fans. It’ll be a chance for him to start a new legacy at a different football club, something that he’ll be leaving behind at Chelsea.
In all honesty, the experienced defender could probably still walk into many Premier League sides, why wouldn’t you want a player of his quality and with his ability on your side? Yes, his legs may not get him about the pitch as quickly as they once did but with his bags of experience and knowledge, I am sure he’ll be able to tweak his game slightly and know when an opposition attack is about to develop and where he needs to be positioned to cut out any oncoming danger.
Personally, I’d love to see John Terry in claret & blue. Although, Bruce better hurry up as it looks as the though the club across the city is starting to make some noise.