John Terry had a bad weekend.
On Saturday, his club - Chelsea - lost to Sunderland, 3-2, to add further indignity to a mediocre season by the team's recent standards. Terry was sent off during the match, and will receive a two-match suspension for his troubles. Chelsea only have two games left to play in the Premier League this season, so Terry is expected to play no further part in club's Premiership finale. And, since the defender is in the last year of his contract, it is assumed that a 3-2 loss in Sunderland will be remembered as John Terry's last competitive game for Chelsea.
As reported by Ian Whittell for the Telegraph, his teammates don't expect to see Terry back next season. Nemanja Matic is quoted as summarizing the mood of the team as valedictory:
All of us in the team wish him all the best for the future and of course this is not a good way to finish in a club but we don’t forget what he won and what he has already done.
Where next? In the same Telegraph article, Sam Allardyce notes that Terry has options:
He might feel, like David Beckham did, that he won’t play for any other club in the Premier League and go venturing far and wide because there’s that many places like America and China that will take a John Terry.
America, you say? Well, Terry's future has been the subject of speculation for some time, and MLS does almost inevitably crop up when the rumor mill is throwing up ideas for a big-name player's last big move.
But the Terry-to-MLS rumor is more than idle speculation. ESPN FC's Jeff Carlisle reports that a league source was moved to leak the news that the current Chelsea captain has been in talks with MLS, but that those discussions stalling because there is not a team in the league willing to meet his current wage demands.
Terry wants Designated Player money, suggests Carlisle's source, and no one in MLS is willing to offer the 35-year-old center back that sort of salary.
Perhaps the most important information here is that someone in MLS sent Carlisle this information: it's effectively a public rejection of Terry's estimation of his own worth to the league.
Perhaps Terry has been swayed by the encouragement of former teammate and current member of the New York Red Bulls, Shaun Wright-Phillips, to come and join the fun in MLS; but he'll need to follow SWP's example and take a significant pay-cut if he is to add an adventure in America to his playing career.