John Terry says that he won’t rush into retirement following his final appearance for Chelsea on Sunday, saying that he fears regretting the decision later.
The Chelsea legend revealed that he decided to delay hanging up his boots following advice from former club and country teammates Frank Lampard and Jamie Carragher, both of whom advised him not to end his career too early.
Terry, who made 717 appearances for the newly-crowned Premier League champions in an illustrious career spanning almost two decades, ran onto the field for the last time on Sunday in his club’s 5-1 win over Sunderland and spoke with reporters after the match about his future.
“I need to take a step back away from the bubble and say, ‘What does John Terry want to do?’,” he said. “Once you stop, that’s it. I have put in a few calls to ex-players, Jamie Carragher, Lamps. Everyone says, ‘Play as long as you can,'” the 36-year old continued.
“I never want to be that player who says, ‘I wish I’d played a couple more years.’ You can’t replace these moments,” Terry added. “When I went out to play against Watford last week, the smell of the grass where it had rained and it was a little bit zippy – all of those things you take for granted over the years. They are the things you are going to miss.
“Ideally, I want to play as long as I can. Physically, I know I can. This year I’m probably fitter than I’ve ever been. Under a manager that works with me on the tactical side of things it takes four or five games to get the sharpness. But the hunger is there inside me to push on and win stuff.
“Everything is an option. I’m not ruling anything out. Whether that be retirement, playing, going into management – I’m halfway through my B-Licence – this or that.
“We all think we can play on until we’re 40, but if ever there was a way to go out it was like this,” Terry added.