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Chelsea captain John Terry will reportedly only sign for a Premier League club that allows him to keep living in Surrey, making Crystal Palace or Bournemouth his most likely destination, per Matt Hughes of The Times.
According to Hughes, the 36-year-old wants to extend his stay in England and, having lived in Oxshott, Surrey, for over 10 years, wishes to remain in the area after his Chelsea contract expires at the end of the current season.
Interest in Terry is high, with Stoke City and West Bromwich Albion also likely to offer him a contract in the near future, per Hughes, who reports that Bournemouth made a loan offer in January that was blocked by manager Antonio Conte.
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And it is Bournemouth who reportedly have the upper hand, per John Cross of the Mirror, who writes the Cherries are in “pole position” to land his signature.
West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic has not ruled out entering the race and given their London location they might be considered among the front-runners.
“Every manager and club would think about him because there aren’t many leaders like him,” Bilic said, per Marc Isaacs of the Mirror.
Wherever he goes next, it will be a tough transition for the Chelsea legend. Terry has been at Stamford Bridge for 22 years, appearing in just under 500 Premier League games for his hometown club. His remarkable playing career at Chelsea was highlighted by the Evening Standard on Twitter:
Standard Sport @standardsport
John Terry’s Chelsea career in stats:
578 as captain
Captain, leader, legend
Read: https://t.co/yF8mZw9asB https://t.co/ebeqrMM8rp
4/17/2017, 4:22:40 PM
However, the former England captain has only made the starting 11 four times in the league in 2016-17.
Chelsea are likely to be very busy in the transfer market this summer. Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata has reportedly “verbally agreed” to join the club, per Diego Castro of Diario Gol (h/t Charles Perrin of the Express).
Morata, 24, has only made 11 La Liga starts for Zinedine Zidane’s team since rejoining the club from Juventus last June.
With so many new players linked with the Blues in recent weeks, it seems highly likely that Chelsea will be a markedly different place by the beginning of the 2017-18 campaign—particularly given their leader Terry will no longer be in the dressing room.
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