So, the cat’s out of the bag – John Terry’s off in the summer.
The 35-year-old central defender is not being offered a new contract, and will be leaving Stamford Bridge for pastures new.
What a shocker.
Terry was one of those players you just expected to stay with his home club for his entire career, much like Steven Gerrard.
But it emerged on Sunday that Terry, like Gerrard, would be moving on.
In Terry’s words, the club are “moving in a different direction”, which is quite telling – this is not John Terry’s decision.
So why are they letting him go?
However much personal distaste I have for the man, it seems odd that a ‘Chelsea legend’ has not been offered an opportunity to end his career with the club he loves, whether as a player, a coach or both.
Which makes me think that there’s more to this than meets the eye.
Clearly Chelsea have had a fairly tumultuous season, with Mourinho’s behaviour spiralling out of control before the Portuguese was shown the door, and a whole host of defeats, both home and away.
Terry was always one of Mourinho’s closest allies, and although this is only speculation, there certainly seems to be a connection between Mourinho’s departure and that of his captain.
So, what’s going on at Chelsea?
Whatever it is, it’s enough for the Blues to say goodbye to a player who has been a key figure in their side for well over a decade.
Does this move signal a shift towards a “New Chelsea”?
I could be wrong, but it seems like the decision not to offer Terry a new contract could well be linked to a desire to start afresh, without any of Mourinho’s allies there causing problems.
We already know that Chelsea have had issues with ‘player power’ in the past, most notably in the sacking of Andre Villas-Boas, and since then, Drogba, Cech and Lampard have all moved on – three players that made up the spine of Chelsea’s side.
The other? John Terry.
If the Chelsea board do want to start afresh, then perhaps they want to start with new players, players not biased towards former managers, players without agendas, axes to grind or history of controversy.
And if that’s the case, then there really is no room for John Terry.