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01st Nov 2023

“All the lads are pulling me back” – John Terry explains crazy dressing room row with Rafa Benitez

Lee Costello

John Terry

“We just didn’t get on from day one.”

John Terry has revealed that he was involved in a crazy row with former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez when he was in charge of the club back in 2013.

Benitez took the job on an interim basis that season, and although he guided the team to Europa League success, he was never accepted by the fans, or a lot of the players.

The Spaniard’s history as Liverpool manager made it difficult for him to be welcomed in London, particularly as a lot of his best moments at Anfield where at the expense of Chelsea.

Speaking on his former teammate’s John Obi Mikel’s ‘Obi One Podcast‘, Terry explains how it all came to boiling point with his old boss.

“We played Man City in the FA Cup, and he wasn’t playing me, so we were at loggerheads, arguing on the training pitch.

“He was leaving me out of the team, leaving me off the bench, but I insisted on travelling with the team. I was on the bench at Man City, and we lost 2-1.

“We came in after the game and he addressed the group and said ‘oh well guys, it doesn’t matter, we have another game at the weekend’.

“At the time, you could feel Man City were doing something, and I’d just had enough. I said ‘Is that accepted? No chance. You’ve accepted us losing to Man City’.

“I’m across the dressing room, all the lads are pulling me back, he’s now coming towards me, and I just said ‘that’s not accepted at Chelsea. Maybe at Liverpool losing a quarter-final (semi-final) is acceptable, but at Chelsea that’s not accepted’.”

This wasn’t the first time that the Chelsea legend has been open about his feelings towards his old gaffer, and has made no secret about the fact that they never saw eye to eye.

Back in 2020 he told Sky Sports: “The supporters never took to him and wanted him out from day one. You could say he was quite successful, we won the Europa League under him of course, but for me personally you want to develop and learn.

“I’d seen tactically how he’d set up against us previously. You give everyone a fair chance and it’s down to them to prove to you otherwise, but we just didn’t get on from day one.

“Every meeting we had it was, ‘We used to do this at Liverpool’. I had to have a few conversations with him and say, ‘gaffer, you have to forget Liverpool, you can’t keep saying we this, we that, you’re at Chelsea now, it’s not going down well with the lads’.

“I was injured when he arrived, and then I struggled to be fair. I was out for probably six weeks, but then I was working back towards fitness, I played in a couple of games, away at Fulham, scored two, he dropped me for the next game. It was all those little bits that added up.”

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