It’s a difficult time for Chelsea supporters. The club find themselves suffocating in mid-table and their chances of ascending the table are becoming more unlikely with every frustrating draw.
Consequently, the relationships between the Chelsea squad and fans have become substantially frayed. This often-crucial connection has been severed amidst a number of the club’s star players failing to reach their usual levels of performance.
However, via club legend and inspirational captain John Terry, the Blues possess a vital medium through which to resurrect this relationship.
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After the dizzying heights that Chelsea reached in 2014-15, this season has proven a bitter reality-check for the Blues.
Such a monumental decline has never been witnessed before in the Premier League and supporters were rightly shocked.
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With the majority of fans idolising Jose Mourinho, the blame usually and rightfully fell on the players themselves after their awful start. Key players were simply not stepping up to the plate nor representing the famous jersey in a dignified manner.
The culmination of frustration towards the players took place in Chelsea’s 3-1 win over Sunderland last month - the first game since Mourinho’s sacking.
Stamford Bridge turned on their own players with a collage of abusive banners adorning the stands. In addition, key targets such as Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas were subjected to persistent criticism.
The events of December 19 exemplified how frayed the relationship between the fans and players had become. Moreover, with Hiddink’s reign yet to pick up steam, this connection remains far from being resurrected.
John Terry however, despite his own season being thronged with poor showings, has kept the passion and desire flowing through the Chelsea squad. Even though his mistakes linger, the 35-year-old has continued to wear his heart on his sleeve.
Chelsea’s dramatic 3-3 draw with Everton this weekend accentuated just how much the Blues mean to Terry. After all, the swashbuckling centre-back has been involved with the club since 1998.
The sheer ecstasy that rooted from Terry’s dramatic 98th minute equaliser had not been witnessed at Stamford Bridge all season long. The rapturous response from the rafters had been so noticeably absent recently and its return was refreshing.
Terry’s desire to repair links with the fans was shown by his celebration where he surrounded himself with those in the stands.
In a squad so littered with foreign stars, Terry remains a beacon of the club’s foolishly underused academy. To the fans, he is seen as one of very few who hold the club so dearly in their hearts.
Subsequently, it is through the club captain that Chelsea should work to repair a positive rapport with the fans. After all, there can be no better example than an 18-year servant of the club.
Besides, it will only hamper the Blues’ intended recovery if the supporters continue to pummel the players with criticism. Chelsea need the fans behind them to spur them past the negativity of this campaign and onto a brighter future.
How much longer can Terry continue to start at centre-back for the Blues? Have YOUR say in the comment box below!