Antonio Conte has confirmed that John Terry may not play much in the remainder of the campaign.
The Chelsea defender recently announced his exit from the club at the end of the season. This comes as a major news considering that Terry has been at the club for over two decades. He has also been the captain of Chelsea since 2004. It has always been difficult to replace a player like Terry in all these years, but age has been catching up with the former England captain in the last few years. He has played very little football in this current campaign. There appears no room for sentiment as Conte is not prepared to give the player a Wembley send-off by giving him a starting line-up position against Tottenham this weekend.
Chelsea take on Tottenham in the FA Cup semifinals. Gary Cahill is unavailable for the game due to a minor injury problem. The club are also coming on the back of a poor run of form which has seen them suffer two defeats – against Crystal Palace and Manchester United – in the last three matches.
Keen to revive the form, Conte has said that he will be making changes. However, he does not see John Terry playing either side of the central defender in a back three formation. It is likely that Terry will play only if David Luiz, who plays as the central defender, is unavailable.
“I think in this system the right position [for Terry] is in the middle of the thee central defenders,” Conte said. “In this case, I think for this position Ake has the right characteristic to be the substitute for Gary, and the same, [Kurt] Zouma for Azpi [Cesar Azpilicueta]. Ake thinks he deserves to have this chance, to play. Because he is showing me in all this period, always a great commitment. He worked very hard,” said Conte.