Benitez ready to risk Chelsea captain Terry against Arsenal

Rafael Benitez could include John Terry in the Chelsea line-up to play Arsenal on Sunday despite the Blues captain barely featuring due to injury since October, the Daily Mirror has reported.

Benitez claimed he would not put undue pressure on Terry’s troublesome knee problem but spoke well of the centre-back’s performance during a light Friday training session. Benitez commented: “I said I wouldn’t take a risk but you have to see your players in every training session and afterwards decide.

On Friday we had a light session because of the snow, and he was training with the team, doing everything. He had his specific programme and was doing well. If I ask him, or anyone, they would say they want to play. I prefer not to ask and decide at the end.

Terry was injured against Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League but was able to feature against Liverpool in the Premier League a few weeks later. However, the former England skipper was hurt in a collision with Luis Suarez and had to be replaced after 40 minutes, only returning to the first team fold against Stoke City a week ago.

The 32-year-old was introduced as an 80th minute substitute against the Potters, with Chelsea already four goals ahead. Terry replaced Juan Mata as Benitez admits the team needs more players possessing Terry’s strength of character.

Benitez said: “ John is one of the strong characters we have… For us to have bodies, to have people with this mentality, can help. Hopefully he will be fine and we will see a positive influence for the rest of the season in the team.

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