John Terry to play key role in Steve Pagliuca’s Chelsea takeover bid with preferred buyer set to be announced NEXT WEEK

JOHN TERRY will play a key role in Steve Pagliuca’s bid to become the next Chelsea owner.

The shy American won the backing of the club’s former captain just 24 hours before final offers were submitted yesterday.

And the Boston Celtics basketball team boss will now tap into the legendary defender’s expertise to help win the four-way race to take over from Roman Abramovich.

Pagliuca is up against fellow Yanks Todd Boehly and Tom Ricketts, plus Brits Lord Seb Coe and Martin Broughton in the battle for Stamford Bridge.

A preferred bidder could be announced by the middle of next week and a deal completed by the end of the month.

Terry is part of the True Blues group which has now aligned itself to Pagliuca’s proposal to buy the £3billion-rated club.

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A source close to the Pagliuca bid told SunSport: “John Terry is a Chelsea icon and is revered to this day as Captain, Leader, Legend in the eyes of the fans.

“We were grateful to receive the support of the True Blues Consortium and encouraged they have validated our commitment to a compelling bid to buy this great club.

“We don’t take that support lightly — fans are the lifeblood of the club — and we hope to work with the group, with John, and other fan groups.”

Pagliuca, 67, broke his silence on Tuesday to reveal a grand vision for Chelsea if he gets the nod for a takeover.

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He guarantees the club will stay put and redevelop its ground and continue the good work being done by the academy which produced JT in the past.

The Ricketts family also brought in fresh blood this week by recruiting India-born beer baron Lord Karan Bilimoria.

Chelsea were put up for sale after Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK Government over alleged links to Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl claims on-loan Chelsea striker Armando Broja has been left in limbo by his parent club’s ownership saga.

Saints are battling with West Ham to keep nine-goal top-scorer Broja, 20, beyond the summer.

But Hasenhuttl said: “At the moment it’s not so easy to find the right person to talk to about the futures of players.”

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