Chelsea legend Terry takes up Villa offer

John Terry

John Terry has set his sights on returning Aston Villa to the big time after joining the Championship club on Monday.

The former Chelsea and England stalwart ended a 22-year association with the Blues when his contract expired last month, and had been linked with several Premier League rivals.

But Terry decided to accept the Villans' offer of a one-year deal, revealing that the idea of facing his previous employers next season would have been too much to bare.

The 36-year-old defender is relishing the prospect of helping Steve Bruce's side win promotion back to the top tier of English football after Villa could only manage a 13th-placed finish last term.

"I won't name names but I'm thankful for the interest in me," Terry told a news conference at his unveiling.

"The mental side of playing against Chelsea was too much to get over for me. I was there for 22 years at the football club. I am very proud of that but this is a new chapter in my life and career.

"My thoughts are 100 per cent here and the ambition is to get us back to the Premier League. It's a huge club. Villa Park is one of the finest stadiums in the country and there's a good group of players here.

"I can't wait to get started now and look to help the squad achieve something special this season. It's a club that deserves to be in the Premier League and I still want to continue playing.

"I am hungry to still play with a team and manager that has the same ambition as me to get promoted. The ideal situation is to get into the Premier League, that's why I'm here and I believe we have the squad of players to do so.

"If they're back in the Premier League this time next year I've done my job, and we'll cross that bridge when we get to it."