Ex-Chelsea captain John Terry joins Aston Villa on one-year contract
Former Chelsea captain John Terry has joined Championship club Aston Villa on a one-year contract.
The news was confirmed shortly after Villa owner Dr. Tony Xia had tweeted: "Welcome JT to Birmingham city...Aston Villa!"
Terry had attracted interest from Premier League clubs including Bournemouth, Swansea City and West Bromwich Albion when it was confirmed he would leave Stamford Bridge after 22 years. The central defender made his Chelsea debut in 1998 against Aston Villa.
The 36-year-old has instead decided to link up with Steve Bruce at Villa Park on a deal that will reportedly see him earn £60,000 a week.
The club announced the completion of the deal on Twitter with a mocked up WhatsApp conversation between Xia, Terry manager Steven Bruce and some of the club's first team players.
Terry told the club's official website: "I am delighted to join Aston Villa. It's a club I have admired from afar for many years -- there are fantastic facilities at Bodymoor Heath, Villa Park is one of the finest stadiums in the country and there's a good group of players here, with an experienced and successful manager in Steve Bruce.
"I can't wait to get started now and look to help the squad achieve something special this season."
Terry added that he had offers from clubs who would have kept him playing in the Premier League, he did not want to be competing against his former club.
"I thank them for their offers -- for me it was just the mental side of playing against Chelsea was too much to get over," he said. "I had 22 years at the football club, 22 unbelievable years. I'm very proud of that but this is a new chapter in my life and my career.
"I wish Chelsea well next season and will be watching out but my thoughts are 100 per cent here and the ambition is to get us back to the Premier League."
Terry is the most decorated captain in Chelsea's history, winning 15 major trophies.
Despite briefly considering retirement, he has decided to play on and could then opt to embark on a career in management.
Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.