John Terry seeks England return in end-of-season friendlies in hope of ending international career with 2014 World Cup finals

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Former captain ends self-imposed exile, but problems remain in his relationship with FA and Ferdinand

John Terry has decided to end his self-imposed international retirement and will make himself available to Roy Hodgson for selection for England, starting with the end-of-season showcase friendlies against the Republic of Ireland and Brazil.

It represents yet another dramatic chapter in the controversial career of Terry, 32, who is understood to have remained in contact with manager Hodgson ever since his announcement in September that he no longer wished to play for the national team after 78 caps over nine years.

As well as his relationship with Hodgson, Terry is understood to believe that he could coexist in the same squad as Rio Ferdinand, whose brother Anton he was found guilty by a commission in September of racially abusing. Terry wants to play in the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil, and then bow out permanently.

He made his decision to withdraw after it became clear the Football Association was pursuing its disciplinary case against him, subsequently proved, for racial abuse of Anton Ferdinand. He has always claimed he was told the charge would be dropped should he win the court case he contested on the same issue in July. Terry’s legal team argued to the independent regulatory commission in September that the FA’s own rules dictated it should adopt the court’s verdict. However, the FA’s lawyers persuaded the commission that new evidence which had emerged since the court case meant the charge should be heard again.

Eight days ago, Terry refused to shake the hand of FA chairman, David Bernstein, one of those he holds responsible for – in his view – changing position on whether the player’s disciplinary case should go ahead. It is not clear what the FA’s view on Terry returning for England would be, but Hodgson has never ruled out the possibility.

There are also potential problems when it comes to the relationship of Terry and Rio Ferdinand. The two have not been reconciled and Ferdinand was recalled to the last England squad, to face San Marino and Montenegro in the World Cup qualifiers in March, although he later withdrew, citing fitness issues. Yet for all the potential problems around Terry there is no question that Hodgson faced major shortages in the centre-back positions during those two games. As well as Ferdinand’s withdrawal last month, he lost Gary Cahill and Michael Dawson to injury, having already been without Phil Jagielka and Phil Jones for the two games. Terry is no longer an automatic first choice for Chelsea, but Hodgson has long admired him.

Any decision to bring back Terry will be fraught with difficulties for Hodgson, who is well aware of the enmity that the player feels towards Bernstein and the FA. Bernstein, the key force in appointing the current England manager, will step down from the position this July, to be replaced by Greg Dyke.

Given how tight World Cup qualifying group H is likely to be – England trail the leaders Montenegro by two points – Hodgson may feel he has no choice but to return to Terry if he faces injuries in the  centre-back position again. Certainly, there would be no reason for the FA to prevent him from doing so. However, the organisation may believe that Terry has to serve some kind of international ban for being found guilty by the commission, a ban he pre-empted by retiring. Some at the FA could make the argument he should not be permitted to return at all.

There is also the wider question of how Terry’s team-mates will respond. He has always claimed no team-mate has ever complained about his behaviour to his face. In Terry’s absence, England have won only two of their five subsequent World Cup qualifiers, both against San Marino. They did, however, beat Brazil in a friendly at Wembley in February.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate