Chelsea legend John Terry explains truth behind infamous Stamford Bridge guard of honour

John Terry enjoyed a glittering Chelsea career – and it came to a unique conclusion.

The Blues No.26 was infamously substituted during the 26th minute of his final Premier League game against Sunderland in 2017.

He was given a guard of honour as he left the pitch midway through the first half at Stamford Bridge in a move widely ridiculed by rival fans.

Despite the critics Terry, now on the coaching staff at Aston Villa, insists he was delighted to go out on his teams.

In a conversation with the former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen on the Unacademy platform, he even branded the event “one of the favourite moments” of his entire career.

“I didn’t play much that season because Antonio Conte came in and we were playing three at the back,” Terry said.



John Terry was given a guard of honour when he was subbed in his final game

“I was coming to the end but we won the league which was fantastic for me. I wanted a proper send-off and Conte and Gary Cahill were excellent with me.


“Conte told me I could play the match but we came to an agreement that I would play for 26 minutes and that would allow Cahill to keep his rhythm ahead of the final the next weekend.

“It’s one of the favourite moments of my career. I remember other players like Lamps didn’t get the send-off they deserved so I was happy to go out how I wanted.”



Terry says it was one of the best moments of his career



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Speaking about the substitution immediately after the game in question, Terry said: “I kind of negotiated with the manager to play 26 minutes and come off.

“I think he wanted to get the boys that didn’t play on Monday night against Watford and give them a run-out. It was a compromise between the two of us.”

Chelsea manager at the time Antonio Conte added: “I think that we had to find the best for him – to start the game and to be substituted in 26 minutes, his shirt number.

“To see our players prepare a guard of honour for him was great, a fantastic idea.

“He deserved this. He’s a legend of this club, not just this club but one of the best defenders in the world.”

source.



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