Abuja – Former England and Chelsea FC captain John Terry has left Aston Villa in the aftermath of their Championship Play-Off Final defeat to Fulham.
Terry joined the Midlands giants last summer with the stated aim of helping to return Villa to the English Premier League after their relegation in 2016.
This, however, failed with a 1-0 loss to the Cottagers at Wembley on Saturday.
Terry left the national stadium a devastated man and his manager Steve Bruce confirmed that the club no longer had an option to extend his contract by one year.
A statement on the club’s website confirmed: “We will like to place on record our most sincere thanks for the effort and professionalism he showed with us last season.
“John is a true leader and was everything and more that we hoped.
“Hugely popular and influential in the dressing room, he played a real captain’s role in creating the incredible bond the players shared with our supporters, and vice-versa.
“We hope he looks back on his time with Villa fondly and we wish him the very best as his career moves forward.”
The 37-year-old Terry offered no indication as to whether he has played his final professional match, saying: “I’m very proud to have had the opportunity to play and captain this great and huge club.
“I have given my everything this year both on and off the pitch and I’m still hurting today that we never managed to get back to the Premier League, where this club 100 per cent belongs.
“I would like to thank Steve Bruce who was instrumental in me joining Villa. I have learnt so much from him as a manager this season. That will stay with me forever.
“Also, I’d like to thank all the staff and players who it was a real pleasure and honour to work with everyday,” Terry wrote on his Instagram page.
Villa’s defeat to Fulham has left the club facing a problematic year ahead.
This is with Championship Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations to consider and a cut in their Premier League parachute payments of over 50 per cent.(NAN)