The Chelsea family coaching tree has grown by a new branch today as John Terry has been appointed assistant manager at Aston Villa, joining the club alongside new manager Dean Smith and Jesus Garcia Pitarch (who made his name at Valencia and Atletico Madrid a decade ago) as Sporting Director.
JT had been a strong candidate for the job ever since officially announcing his retirement over the weekend, though initially he was rumored to be joining alongside Thierry Henry. Henry has stayed as assistant manager for the Belgium national team instead, so Villa went out and hired Dean Smith away from Brentford. Smith, like Terry, was a center back by trade during his playing career (mostly in the third division), but he’s earned himself a reputation for entertaining football.
We are delighted to announce the appointments of Dean Smith as our new Head Coach, John Terry as Assistant Coach and Jesus Garcia Pitarch as Sporting Director ✍️— Aston Villa FC (@AVFCOfficial) October 10, 2018
Full story https://t.co/gNj5QrSa7c#OneOfOurOwn #AVFC pic.twitter.com/HUPSQ8BiDz
Villa fans certainly could use a bit of entertaining after a highly disappointing start to the season saw Steve Bruce sacked last week.
“These three appointments represent the start of a new era and direction at Aston Villa and we are delighted to secure their services after an extensive search.
“Dean has a clear and successful coaching philosophy as well as a real understanding of Aston Villa Football Club. He is also knowledgeable about the Championship. The board welcomes him to the club and is looking forward to working with him and his staff.
“John is one of the most decorated players in English football, has an affinity with the club and is ready to make the next step in his career working alongside Dean.
“And Jesus also brings a huge amount of experience in his particular role having worked with some of the biggest clubs in Europe. He will ensure the club has an integrated approach running from the academy through the U23s and into the first-team.”
-Christian Purslow; source: Aston Villa FC
Incidentally, if the name Christian Purslow sounds familiar, that’s because he used to be Chelsea’s marketing director. He stepped down from that role last year, about 18 months ago, but returned to working in professional football as Aston Villa’s CEO at the start of this season.
Best of luck to all of them, and to Chelsea loanee Tammy Abraham of course.