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Interview shows John Terry to be small-minded and self-centered



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Just had a quick read through the comments of Chelsea captain John Terry here (his interview in the ICON magazine published yesterday), and I’m afraid he should have kept his mouth shut and gotten on with the game instead of giving this interview.

He’s quite passionate about football – we see that at Chelsea so if he’s upset about losing the England captaincy and thinks of it as a snub to his leadership qualities, that’s understandable. The way he goes on in the interview, he’s defending himself against all the press he’s been getting about his ‘behavior’ off the pitch and on the pitch when playing for Chelsea and that his right.

On the other hand, giving such an interview – even if he’s talking about himself and Capello rather than anyone else – is essentially shitting on his teammate Rio Ferdinand, who has done, by all accounts, a fair job when asked to be Manchester United captain and has led his backline with authority and passion. You only need to see the bawling over Rio gives to EVDS when the senior man makes a mistake – if that’s not passion, what is?

Here’s part of what Terry said:

“If they don’t want an England captain fighting for England in every way possible, fighting to win the ball and come out of the tackle, fighting for the cause, then that’s down to them to make that decision.”


“If Mr Capello wants someone who is going to go out there, desperate to win and to do everything it takes, then I’ll be his right choice. If not, that’s down to him to make the decision.”

A lot of what he says, I agree with. He wants to win, he fights hard, etc etc, I believe it and I value it. The only problem is that he does that for Chelsea, while not for England. None of his other teammates perform at the same level either as they do for their clubs, so you could argue that it’s relative, but if the whole team is playing piss-poor does that transform one man’s efforts into ‘great’? No, on an objective scale, Terry is a winner for Chelsea, not necessarily so for England.

But more than that, John Terry, as Chelsea captain and former England captain, and as a person who wants the armband so very much, should be smart enough not to put down his teammate and temporary captain the way he has in this interview. Where Rio Ferdinand talked about the temporary nature of his appointment and his desire to do the best for England, Terry was going on about how he deserved the captaincy.


“The money, the lifestyle, counts for nothing, it’s about the performance. More than the performance, it’s the winning. I am not going to change. It’s for the people in charge, the new manager, to make their decision.”

This is outright whining and childish stubbornness. You’re being asked to lead by example, and part of that ‘leadership’ requires you to be respectful to your teammates as well as respectful of the spirit of the game. If you can’t do that, then at least perform when called upon.

At this point, JT is showing all the necessary passion and none of the intelligence that leadership requires. That might work in the Premier League, it doesn’t work on the international stage.

His comments are the sort of talk that divide teams – and it not only hurts his relationship with Rio but with other Manchester United players as well. I’m sure both are big enough to work it out between them, but if Terry wanted to keep his public image clean, he could have gone and fucked Britney Spears and caused less damage.

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Ahmed Bilal created Sportslens in 2006. He is a business consultant and entrepreneur who helps businesses identify and overcome their biggest challenges. He’s also the founder of Football Media, an online advertising agency that specialises in sports and male audience targeting, with a monthly reach of 100m+ sports fans in the UK and US. He’s also the previous owner of Soccerlens.com – a sports news site that reaches 3m+ readers / month.