LONDON: Former Chelsea and England captain John Terry has joined Championship side Aston Villa on a one-year deal, the club confirmed on its website on Monday.
“I am delighted to join Aston Villa,” Terry told the Villa website. “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 became a free agent at the weekend after 22 years at Stamford Bridge where he played his entire career in the Premier League.
He made his final appearance for the champions in May, leaving to a guard of honour 26 minutes into the game to correspond with his shirt number.
But, despite interest from West Bromwich Albion, Stoke City and Bournemouth, he has been persuaded to drop down to England’s second tier by Villa manager Bruce.
Villa are former European Cup holders who were relegated from the Premier League in 2016. Despite spending heavily under Chinese owner Tony Xia, they failed to gain instant promotion and finished a disappointing 13th last season.
But they are among the favourites to go up next season.