After a decade at Chelsea that has seen him win just about every trophy imaginable and accumulate enough appearances to draw level with Charlie Cooke for 15th all-time, Mikel John Obi’s Chelsea career could be drawing to a close.
With just a year left on his contract, Mikel will be weighing up his options starting in January. He’s still just 29 and far from being done as a professional footballer.
"I have one year left [on my contract]. When you have a year left as a football player, you have to start planning and start thinking about what’s going to happen at the end of the season. Yes, there are going to be rumours, yes, there are going to be conversations between clubs."
"When you have a year left, in January, you are allowed to talk to other clubs and sign a pre-contract or have an agreement so, yes, I will talk to other clubs because you never know what is going to happen."
"I’ve been here for a long, long time. I’ve spent 11 years of my life in this football club, it is my home. This season is the last at the club if my contract ends. I am quite relaxed about it, the future looks good."
Although it looks very likely that this will be Mikel's last season as a Chelsea player, he's open to talks on a new extension as well.
"I am always open to a new conversation, a negotiation [with Chelsea]. But if there’s none, the future still looks bright. One day you have to move on. I think my memories here, my achievements here, are something that no one will ever take away from me."
"I have won everything there is to win with this football club. We were the first London club to win the Champions League, and forever I will be one of the first players to win the Champions League for Chelsea. Those memories will never go away."
-John Obi Mikel; source: Goal
A steady presence in midfield whenever called upon, Mikel’s lack of goals and sideways-passing narrative have become legendary in Chelsea lore. He could never quite fill Makelele’s shoes, but he developed into a key midfield lockdown option from his early, hot-headed days. The Human Final Whistle, as he became affectionately known during our last title-winning campaign, Mikel’s Chelsea career has been undeniably glorious (even amid often very harsh criticisms) and we will no doubt fondly reminisce about him in the years to come. If this is to be his final year at Chelsea that is...