Terry: Rival fans would love me in their team

Jul 30, 2015 Posted Under: News

The Chelsea defender says supporters at other clubs would appreciate his commitment to their cause, and admits he does not want to be looked back on and hated when he retires

Chelsea defender John Terry insists fans of rival clubs would “love” to have him in their team, and says that while he uses criticism to his advantage he does not want to be hated when the time comes to retire.

At 34 years old Terry was one of the most important members of Chelsea’s Premier League-winning squad last season, playing every minute as he secured his fourth top-flight title of an illustrious career.

But he has often courted controversy and in 2012 was found guilty by the Football Association of racially abusing then Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand, which landed him a four-match ban and ended his international career with England.

And while Terry acknowledges the hostile reception he gets around the world, he says fans would appreciate his commitment if he were playing in their colours.

“I’m sure that if I was in their team they would love me in their team because I am one of those players who gives everything to the cause,” he said while appearing on the Men In Blazers podcast.

“Unfortunately the stick comes with it but I am very much used to that now. I do get a lot of stick, not only in the UK but everywhere we go really.

“But I thrive on that and try and use it in a positive way but I certainly don’t try and block it out.

“I use it to my advantage because nine times out of 10 if I can stay focused and keep the team focused we are going to come out as winners.

“And when you walk off the pitch having done your job and having done it the right way and go off with three points there is not much more to say.”

But while he has become accustomed to the jeers and whistles, the defender wants to be remembered for his footballing achievements when he eventually hangs up his boots.

“You hope that when you hang up your boots, you don’t want to be hated,” he added, “you just want to be thought of as a very good footballer and someone who gave everything for their club.”

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Flamini thanks Mourinho for Cech 'favour'

Jul 30, 2015 Posted Under: News

The Czech Republic international completed his move to the Emirates from the Blues in July and the Frenchman is delighted with the acquisition of the goalkeeper

Mathieu Flamini has thanked Jose Mourinho for selling Petr Cech to Arsenal.

Cech completed an £11 million move to the Emirates in June, with the 33-year-old calling time on his nine-year spell with the Blues.

Flamini admits that he was shocked by Mourinho’s decision to allow Cech to leave and believes it could yet come back to haunt him, with the former Blues shot-stopper set to face his old team-mates once again in Sunday’s Community Shield.

“I was surprised by Mourinho because he really doesn’t do that,” he is quoted as saying by the Daily Telegraph.

“He’s a competitor and usually doesn’t like to sell any players to his rivals, but it’s a good favour for us and now we have to take advantage. That’s why we have been lucky on this one.

“It’s very important. Not only for his quality but also for his character. When you play at the top level, the leaders on the pitch make the difference. Not only when things go well but especially when things go bad. So, for us, Petr Cech is a top signing. He is someone with character, someone with a winning mentality.”

Flamini initially left Arsenal in 2008 before returning five years later and the Frenchman believes the club has progressed immeasurably since his first departure.

“I can feel Arsenal now is different to the club I left in 2008. I don’t think any of the key players left in the last two years. It’s a great example,” he added.

“And each year we have added quality players like Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Petr Cech. These are players who can make the difference at any moment. So I think we have a very good chance.”

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Filipe Luis: My Chelsea spell was not a failure

Jul 29, 2015 Posted Under: News

The Brazilian has returned to Spain after just one season in the Premier League but he is adamant he was right to move last summer

Filipe Luis insists his spell with Chelsea in the Premier League should not be considered a disappointment.

The Brazil international left Vicente Calderon for Stamford Bridge 12 months ago, despite having lifted the Liga title with Atletico Madrid, but made just 26 appearances in all competitions under Jose Mourinho.

However, having won both the Premier League and League Cup during his one season in England before rejoining Diego Simeone’s side, the 29-year-old says he does not regret the move.

“I’m very happy to be back here after a year,” he said to reporters. “It was a very nice experience at Chelsea and I won the Premier League. 

“Many people think it went badly, but for me it was the opposite. It was a great season, I learned a lot, I played games in a different league.”

Filipe Luis is also determined to win back the affection of Atletico fans despite having briefly turned his back on the club.

“This is my home and my best years have been here. I never disconnected from Atletico, I never stopped watching games,” he continued.

“When I left to try a new experience, I knew from day one it would be difficult as I left a family here. That’s the concept we have in the dressing room. I felt like I never left.

“My team-mates have been spectacular. I have never lost touch with them, I watched some Atletico matches last season and they watched some of mine. 

“With regards to the fans, whenever I’ve played in the Atletico shirt I have given all that I can, I think I will win the fans [back] on the field and not with words.

“You should always perform at your best regardless of the time you wear the shirt. I hope to perform at my best.”

The former Deportivo defender is excited to return to action in Spain’s top flight in 2015-16, although he admits the English game enjoys a better infrastructure.

“The Premier League is organised better, the stadiums are full, the games are more attractive because there are almost no fouls and no stoppages in the game,” he added.

“But La Liga has something special, too. Every team has a lot of quality.”

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Benitez cools Mourinho war of words

Jul 29, 2015 Posted Under: News

The Madrid boss refused to fan the flames further, while he was quiet on potential summer moves for David de Gea and Marco Reus

Real Madrid coach Rafael Benitez has opted to play down the reignited feud between himself and Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, instead looking only to “speak about football” at a press conference on Wednesday.

Benitez’s wife Montse reopened the pair’s long-running rivalry when she playfully suggested the ex-Napoli boss had been appointed as Carlo Ancelotti’s successor to help clear up the “mess” left by Mourinho at the Santiago Bernabeu in 2013 after he was previously appointed at Inter and Chelsea shortly after the Portuguese enjoyed successful stints with both.

Mourinho consequently launched a scathing attack at Benitez’s wife and suggested “she needs to occupy her time and if she takes care of her husband’s diet she will have less time to speak about me”.

The Chelsea manager also accused Benitez of undoing his good work at Inter following their treble success, but Benitez was in no mood to keep the argument going.

“Mourinho’s comments? I’m the Real Madrid coach. I like football, I understand football and for this reason I only speak about football. 

“We are here [in China] to prepare for the game against AC Milan and a tour that is going very well.

“I want to talk about the present and the future, which I hope will be here at Madrid for many years.”

Benitez was also questioned about potential moves for David de Gea and Marco Reus, but made it clear that no decisions have been made regarding Madrid’s transfer plans as of yet.

“I already have a great team and I am happy with my players. I am focused only on preparing for this last game of the tour against Milan.

“When we get back to Madrid we will make a more in-depth study and evaluate the squad. Today, I’m only thinking about the group and this group is very good.

“If I can improve the team, then I will try to do that. I am focused on trying to get the players to improve day by day.”

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Begovic: I came to Chelsea to test myself against Courtois

Jul 29, 2015 Posted Under: News

The former Stoke City goalkeeper believes that he can do what Petr Cech was unable to and usurp the Belgium international as Jose Mourinho’s first choice between the posts

Chelsea goalkeeper Asmir Begovic believes that he can challenge Thibaut Courtois to become first choice for the Premier League champions.

The Bosnia-Herzegovina international joined the Blues from Stoke City in July, signing a four-year contract in the wake of Petr Cech’s departure for Arsenal.

The long-serving Cech was a clear second choice behind Courtois last season but Begovic welcomes the challenge of unseating the Belgian.

“I want to test myself against Thibaut. He’s one of the best goalkeepers in the world but I believe in myself. I want to try and get as many games as I can,” he told reporters.

“There have been no guarantees from the manager. The challenge that’s here, the manager and players was what attracted to me.

“I’ll back myself, absolutely. I’ll be keeping my head down and working hard to see how I can help this team in the future.”

Begovic denies joining Chelsea purely for money and believes that he will improve testing himself against the best.

“Obviously everyone has their opinion but, for me, it was more of a challenge to try something different,” he explained. “I think I was at that stage where I want to test myself against the best and that’s ultimately what I’ve come here to do.

“Even after the first week, you can see the quality here and how they can improve you with the levels and demands here.”

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