Belfast Telegraph

Chelsea woe spurred on return - Terry

John Terry has admitted the meltdown at Chelsea drove his incredible injury comeback as he revealed he was jogging again only two days after knee surgery.

Blues captain Terry earned a shock place in the squad for Tuesday night's FA Cup fifth-round win at Birmingham, less than a fortnight after undergoing a procedure that was expected to sideline him until next month.

The 31-year-old, who was an unused substitute in what was Chelsea's first game since Andre Villas-Boas was sacked as manager, is now targeting a recall in Saturday's Barclays Premier League game against Stoke. He told Chelsea TV: "Once I had the operation I was literally jogging about after two days, which was incredible."

Terry added: "I said to the physios, the way things were here, I just wanted to push myself and be involved and try to get back as quickly as possible.

"I've done that, worked really hard in the gym, been on triple sessions going back late in the evening on my own as well - which has been tough. The target for myself was always to get back and hopefully be back for the Stoke game, so this is a massive boost for me."

As a result of the injury, Terry could only watch as Chelsea's miserable campaign lurched from crisis to crisis. They went five matches without a win in his absence before beating Bolton a week and a half ago but defeat at West Brom on Saturday meant the end for Villas-Boas.

Player power was said to have been one of the factors in the Portuguese's downfall and Terry admitted Chelsea's squad needed to look in the mirror.

He said: "Sad for Andre, because unfortunately it falls on his head, when I think the players would hold their hands up and say, 'Clearly, we've not been good enough and we all made mistakes together'. He's the man whose head's on the block and unfortunately goes."

Terry dedicated Tuesday night's win not only to caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo and assistant Eddie Newton, but also to Villas-Boas. He said: "We dug deep for him, for Robbie as well taking charge, Eddie coming in as well - it's nice to have familiar faces around who know the club.

"We've done enough talking amongst ourselves over the last three or four months. Robbie came in an said those exact same things as well. He's been here, played here, the same as Eddie. We have to fight for the shirt and that was the message to the lads."

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