Listen up Boehly, we have the answer to Chelsea’s striker woes… John Terry

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Chelsea’s John Terry applauds the fans at the end of the legends match at Stamford Bridge, London. The match is being played in memory of former Chelsea player and manager, Gianluca Vialli, who died January 6, 2023, aged 58 following a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. Picture date: Saturday September 9, 2023.

Chelsea have spent north of £1billion under Todd Boehly’s ownership, but watching them try and score goals is more painful than running a marathon over upturned plugs.

While four points from their opening three fixtures could be considered baby steps, Chelsea had long periods of dominance against Liverpool and West Ham. Both opponents, canny operators with managers that have led them to trophy-lifting success, easily kept the Blues at arm’s length.

And their reverse against Nottingham Forest was an unwelcome throwback to the Graham Potter era with their sterile possession, lack of creativity and the kind of misses that suggest the club’s forwards would fail to hit a cow’s backside with an orchestra’s worth of banjos.

But salvation may be on the horizon for Boehly, Mauricio Pochettino and the beleaguered Chelsea support. Never mind signing players too young to vote on Wandsworth-length contracts, get John Terry out of retirement and watch the goals flow.

Terry returned to Stamford Bridge on Saturday night as part of the Chelsea Legends XI that took on Bayern Munich to raise money for the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and the Chelsea Foundation in memory of the sadly departed Gianluca Vialli.

And the former Chelsea captain opened the scoring with a finish that suggested the ghosts of Pele and Gerd Muller have been giving him coaching lessons in their spare time.

Combining well with Florent Malouda on the left flank, Terry hoodwinked the nearest Bayern defenders into giving him the freedom of west London to slot home the cross and lift the roof at Stamford Bridge.

The more cynical members of society will say anybody with functioning legs would’ve scored given Bayern’s arresting dereliction of marking duties – or perhaps feeling the effects of prolonged exercise in middle-aged legs – and that’s fair enough.

But Chelsea have produced a string of wayward-finishing clinics under their last four managers. Put Nic Jackson, the poor sod currently trying to break the club’s striker curse, in the same position and who could say with 100% accuracy that the ball ends up in the net?

F*ck convention. Todd, give Terry a short-term contract and watch him eclipse Erling Haaland in no time. He’s the highest-scoring defender in Premier League history, after all. It makes sense.

Or, at least, as much sense as everything else going on at the Bridge.

Yesterday’s charity match, which saw Chelsea run out 4-0 winners and Terry presented with a trophy by Vialli’s family, finished 12th in Boehly’s first season, and have begun his second campaign at the helm in uncertain fashion.

Despite that, Terry is backing Boehly to take Chelsea to the summit of English football once again.

Speaking at an event on Friday night, the former England captain said: “I’ve come across Todd Boehly five or six times. They are trying all they can. They have all the right intentions.

“Frank was dealing with it closely and they are trying to do the right things long term. All we can do is trust them. I believe we will be back.”

Terry also revealed his two current favourite Chelsea players and launched a defence of Mason Mount after his move to Manchester United.

“The two I love, I love Reece. I love Levi,” he said. “He’s got loads more to come, he’s been brilliant so far. (It’s) Important that Reece stays fit and gets his body where it needs to be.

“And Mase is proper Chels through and though. There’s always two sides to a story and I know the other side to it. I’m not going to air that tonight but there’s another side to the story.

“Let’s not be too harsh on Mason when he comes back [to Stamford Bridge with Man Utd].”

As Terry lifted both arms to the sky after scoring in memory of Vialli, touching the hearts of everyone present, it was hard not to speculate that Chelsea could seriously do with a player of his leadership, iron-will and surprisingly deadly finishing ability these days.

By Michael Lee


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