Wayne Rooney has revealed that Chelsea captain John Terry is the “toughest” defender he has ever played against.
In a Q&A session on Rooney’s Facebook page he answered a series of questions related to football such as who his favourite player is and who is the quickest player at Manchester United as well as many more.
But it was his decision to pick John Terry as the toughest defender he had ever played against that stood out. That is some compliment for Terry considering Rooney has played against some of the best defenders in the world in some of the biggest games possible.
The striker would have a long list of candidates for that title as he’s played in the Premier League for 13 years, as well as the Champions League and numerous cup finals, coming up against some top defenders.
Though, it is hard to disagree with Rooney when you look at the way Terry has consistently performed at such a high level for so many years.
Article continues below
Terry broke into Chelsea’s team in 1998 when Gianluca Vialli gave him his debut but was not a first team regular until the 2000/01 season when Claudio Ranieri took over at Stamford Bridge. From that season on, he hasn’t looked back and has become the club’s most successful captain.
He has led his team to three Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two League Cups, The Europa League title and an one Champions League success though he didn’t play in both of the latter.
During his time playing in the Premier League he has won the PFA Player of the Year once and been named in their team of the year on three occasions.
They are some accolades, and no doubt put Terry near the top of the list as one of the best defenders in the Premier League era.
Rooney, who has played against Terry on numerous occasions, as well as playing with him for England clearly thinks highly of him and recognises the veteran defender’s qualities.
Before Jose Mourinho returned to Stamford Bridge though, Terry had to endure a tough couple of seasons when Andre Villas-Boas and Rafa Benitez were in charge. He found himself not being a regular in the team for the first time in over ten years. But since Mourinho has returned, Terry has restored himself as Chelsea’s number one defender.
Top of his game
There was a strong argument to be made before the World Cup last year that Roy Hodgson should have tried as hard as possible to get the Blues skipper out of international retirement to play for his country in Brazil. There is no doubt that going into that tournament that he was the best defender this country had to offer even at the age of 33.
In fairness that claim is probably still valid. At this point in time it is very hard to name a better English defender, or even a better defender in the entire Premier League. His levels of performance have been so high in the last two seasons and he has looked so assured at the heart of Chelsea’s defence that it looks like he is only just entering his prime, not coming to the end of his career.
The now 34-year-old has recently said that he wants a new contract to stay at Stamford Bridge even after seeing some of the Chelsea old guard move on with the likes of Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard leaving in favour of longer contracts elsewhere.
Chelsea have a policy of only offering a one-year deal to players over 30 and Terry seems more than willing to accept that, and they would be mad to not offer him one as he continues to impress this season.
Is John Terry the Premier League's best ever defender? Have your say in the comments below!