The most striking thing about Chelsea for the past couple of Premier League games is their missing captain John Terry. The English defender was played by Jose Mourinho in the League Cup win over Walsall, a League One team but ever since Terry was substituted at halftime against Manchester City, his role in the team has greatly been reduced.
Aside from being the captain and one of the most experienced players in the Premier League, John Terry is one of a handful of players who have represented Chelsea in more than 500 games. He is also their most successful captain and their highest scoring captain, so why isn’t Mourinho putting him back in the starting lineup?
Old is gold
Age certainly is a factor in the replacement of the Chelsea legend, Terry is 34-years-old and has often been caught out by the pace of a few players in the league. We have seen how he has struggled to keep up with play in a few games but last season he was one of the best players in the league and certainly one of the best defenders in the league, can someone trail off so quickly, within the space of one season.
It isn’t just Terry who has had a bit of a slow season, Ivanovic, Hazard, Costa, Fabregas and Courtois, to name a few, have all been rather average or below par for the club, Terry hasn’t been singled out, even Ivanovic was left out after a couple of poor performances.
The man playing in Terry’s position is the young Kurt Zouma, the French defender looked good against Arsenal but once again, Chelsea were poor in the first half against Newcastle, their defensive issues costing them a couple of goals before the substitute Ramires rescued them with a point.
Kurt Zouma was expected to take the mantle over from John Terry this season or at least have a greater run in the team. He still needs to learn and develop more and that can only take place if he plays alongside John Terry. Mourinho might have a plan to bring Terry back into the team, he is one of the most influential players in the team and not keeping him in the starting lineup will harm Chelsea over the long run.
Another reason, you could call it a conspiracy that could see Terry being kept on the bench could be regarding the signing of John Stones. Chelsea have not had the best transfer window and they needed to bring in a top class central defender, John Stones was handpicked but the deal didn’t go through, this could be one way of Jose Mourinho showing the club that he needs to get more players into the team or they could trail further behind in the league.
Whether it is a move to ensure Chelsea get a big signing or simply for the fact that Terry has not been up to the mark this season, Mourinho should bring the defender back into the team. Chelsea don’t look any better without him in the starting lineup and playing him with Zouma would not only help in the development of the French defender but Terry’s experience is invaluable to the team which has been rather poor all season.