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You’ve given me everything, John Terry tells Chelsea fans

Premier League

LONDONChelsea legend John Terry’s final appearance at Stamford Bridge ended with his teammates forming a guard of honour as he exited in the 26th minute of the Premier League clash with Sunderland.

The 36-year-old – the time of his premature departure chiming with his shirt number – was visibly moved when he was replaced by Gary Cahill, who has also stepped in and skippered the team to the title this season.

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Chelsea captain John Terry, second right, raises the Premier League trophy at Stamford Bridge on. Photo: Frank Augstein, APJohn Terry waves to the Chelsea fans. Photo: Frank Augstein, AP

Terry, who leaves Chelsea at the end of the season after 22 years, exited to a standing ovation from the fans, and despite some off-pitch scandals, is revered by them.

Terry, though, returned to the pitch after the match to receive the Premier League trophy, the 15th piece of silverware he has lifted. He may also get to raise the FA Cup if Chelsea beat Arsenal in next Saturday’s final at Wembley.

The former England central defender then made an emotional address to the Chelsea fans – paying tribute to both them and Russian owner Roman Abramovich, who was present.

“Today is one of the most difficult days of my life,” said Terry. “I’ve been very fortunate to work with some unbelievable players and managers throughout my career. I’m thankful to every single one of them.

“I’d like to thank Roman Abramovich and all the board. He’s the best owner in world football.”

Terry has yet to decide whether or not to carry on playing, although Swansea manager Paul Clement has said he would like to have him after working with him when he was on the coaching staff at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea captain John Terry, right, and Gary Cahill raise the Premier League trophy. Photo: Frank Augstein, AP


Terry appeared on the pitch with his children. “I’d like to thank my wife and my kids for supporting me in this amazing journey I’ve had,” said Terry. “You (the Chelsea fans) are the best supporters in the world, without a shadow of a doubt.

“You’ve given me everything. You picked me up when I was down, sung my name when I had a bad game and disappointed you.

“I’ll come back here one day, supporting the team for years to come.”

Former Tottenham, Barcelona and England striker Gary Lineker was quick to take to Twitter to pay tribute to the central defender.

“John Terry’s magnificent Chelsea career ends after 26 minutes of his final match. A great defender. A real leader. And a winner,” tweeted Lineker.

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