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John Terry retires: Former Chelsea captain announces retirement amid Aston Villa manager speculation

John Terry has announced his retirement from professional football after four months without a club, with the former Chelsea and England captain being strongly linked with a managerial role at Aston Villa.

In a short statement on his Instagram page, Terry said: "After 23 incredible years as a footballer, I have decided now is the right time to retire from playing."

The picture was accompanied by the caption: "THANK YOU."

Terry left Villa in the summer after they failed to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking, having lost the Championship Play-Off Final to Fulham. But following Steve Bruce's dismissal earlier this week in the wake of the 3-3 draw with Preston North End , Terry has been linked with a dramatic return to Villa Park alongside Thierry Henry, the current Belgium assistant manager, with Terry set to be the Frenchman's No 2 if speculation is to be believed.

Villa's 2-1 defeat against Millwall on Saturday leaves the club in 15th position, four points off the play-off places and 10 points behind leaders Sheffield United.

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