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Chelsea legend John Terry has called time on his football career and has now retired from a playing career that saw him win many titles and reach legendary status for club and country.

The 37-year-old made over 700 appearances for the Blues and won five Premier League titles at Stamford Bridge as well as the Champions League, Europa League, FA Cup and League Cup.

Terry released a statement about his retirement as he said: “After 23 incredible years as a footballer, I have decided now is the right time to retire from playing.

“I have many people to thank.

“My wife Toni and my two children, Georgie and Summer, for being my rocks throughout my career – I couldn’t have done it without you, I love you with all my heart.

“I thank my parents, Sue and Ted, for the sacrifices they made foe me as a boy, giving me the best opportunity to fulfil my dream and become a professional footballer.

“My brother, Paul, for his help and advice throughout my career – and all my family and friends for their great support.

“As a 14-year-old, I made my best and biggest decision: to sign for Chelsea football club.

“Words will never be enough to show how much everyone at the club means to me, in particular the fans.

“Right from the outset they have given me total support, on and off the pitch, and I have a tremendous bond with them.

“We achieved so many great memories together and I couldn’t have succeeded without you.

“To me, you are the best fans in the world.

“I hope I have done you all proud wearing the shirt and the armband.

“I want to thank my amazing teammates, coaches, managers and backroom staff, who I was honoured to work with and learn from.

“They all guided me on my way to playing 717 games for the club I love, and it was a privilege to serve them as a captain.

“They also helped me achieve my boyhood dream of playing for and captaining England, of which I am immensely proud.

“My club career and heart will always belong to Chelsea, but I am grateful for my loan spell at Nottingham Forest in 1999, which was invaluable for my development as a young player.

“And I also want to say a huge tank you to Aston Villa for giving me the opportunity to play at such a big club and captain it throughout the 2017/18 season.

“It was a privilege to represent such a renowned football club with great fans.

“I look forward to the next chapter in my life and the challenges ahead. JT.”

Terry has been receiving many plaudits from ex teammates, footballer and managers, and now former Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has also paid his tribute to his former skipper.

He wrote on Twitter: “A great professional and a great man. It’s been an honour and a pleasure to have had you as captain.

“Good luck with all your next challenges, John!”

Photo: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Former Chelsea striker Diego Costa has also paid tribute to Terry, and he had something interesting to say.

“Congrats on your fantastic and successful career,” the Atletico Madrid star wrote.

“Thank you for all you’ve done for me during my years at Chelsea (although I couldn’t understand a single word you said to me).

“I wish you all the best in this new chapter of your life.”

About the Author

Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.