Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Terry Back in Action but Puts His First-Team Return on Hold

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Terry Back in Action but Puts His First-Team Return on Hold

Article excerpt

Byline: Simon Johnson and Tom Collomosse

JOHN TERRY admits it is too soon for him to return to the Chelsea team after playing his first game since being injured two months ago.

Terry played 45 minutes in an Under-21s match against Fulham last night and felt no ill effects from the knee damage he sustained against Liverpool.

Chelsea supporters are desperate to see the 32-year-old return to action as soon as possible and had hoped he could play at Stoke tomorrow but Terry, who has been back in full training for a week after missing 16 games, is still way short of match fitness and believes he needs more playing time before making a return to the first-team squad.

The captain said: "I feel all right. The plan was to play 30 to 45 minutes against Fulham and I managed to come through the first half. My knee feels totally fine which is the main thing. It's just the lungs that are feeling it a bit, which is only natural.

"The timing comes in training. The pace of the game when working with the first team is so quick anyway, so you get a couple of days when you feel totally off it.

"It has been six to eight weeks off, so it's like pre-season again. It has taken about a week to get back and start finding my feet again but with the game last night and a bit more training, hopefully that [match sharpness] will come. I may play another 45 minutes in another game.

"The manager mentioned in the press conference this week that maybe it's too soon to get back starting.

"The lads have been playing well as well, so I know better than anybody I have to wait my time, be patient and try to get back in the squad first and then the team after that.

"It has been a frustrating two months for me but everything felt fine in the match against Fulham.

"I was passing and tackling, so it is just really positive to have got through the game and to give myself a chance to be back involved with the first team."

Chelsea's next match after Stoke is against Southampton at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday and the Blues will have to arrange a friendly behind closed doors before then if their captain is to have any chance of featuring in that game. …

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