The many oddities of the former Chelsea captain’s unveiling at Villa
After 22 years with Chelsea, John Terry has joined Aston Villa on a one-year deal. And it’s all very weird.
First of all, Villa announced the signing with a fake WhatsApp conversation between cryptic owner Dr. Tony Xia, manager Steve Bruce, Terry, and several of his new teammates. It’s strange.
— Aston Villa FC (@AVFCOfficial) July 3, 2017
Secondly, have a look at that photo at the top of this page. Not only is it odd seeing John Terry in a kit that isn’t Chelsea’s (he did play a few matches on loan at Nottingham Forest when he was 20 and that looks odd now, too), but why is he holding the same shirt he’s wearing in that photograph? Is it an attempt to offset how jarring it is to see him in claret? The photographer thought that maybe if there were two shirts in the picture with him, it would somehow make it seem more real? Is he wearing a third Villa shirt as a right shoe out of frame? I feel dizzy.
Thirdly, John Terry won the Premier League last season and now he’s going to be playing in the Championship. It’s like he voluntarily relegated himself. He says he didn’t want to sign with another Premier League club because he couldn’t bear to play against Chelsea and I can see how he might be curious to experience a promotion battle for the first time in his career, but this will still be strange.
And finally, this wasn’t Steve Bruce’s first attempt at signing Terry. When Bruce was manager of Huddersfield Town, he saw Terry during his loan spell at Forest and put in a £750,000 bid for him, which (according to Bruce) Chelsea actually accepted. “But the boy didn’t want to leave Chelsea at the time,” Bruce said in 2010. “I was close. At the death he didn’t want to go.” Now, 17 years later, he gets Terry on a free. Granted, I’m not sure if that qualifies as “bizarre,” but the thought of Terry playing these last 17 years at Huddersfield Town certainly does.