Ex-England star Terry reveals obscure rule Mourinho taught Chelsea players that even referees didn't know

Jose Mourinho John Terry Chelsea
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Former England centre-back John Terry has revealed the obscure rule that Jose Mourinho taught his players to gain an edge at Chelsea.
  • Mourinho told both centre-backs to go down injured
  • Referees unaware they were unable to leave pitch
  • Terry labelled the Portuguese's rule as "incredible"

WHAT HAPPENED? While working as a pundit during the World Cup in Qatar, Terry divulged a rule that Mourinho put in place whenever his side went a goal up in a match. The former Chelsea captain, who played under the Portuguese during both his managerial stints at Stamford Bridge, claims that not even referees were aware of the law, which he exploited to great effect with the help of Gary Cahill to help run the clock down.

WHAT THEY SAID: "I remember, the rule was, if we were 1-0 up and the ball got delivered into the box…if two defenders went up together and both went down on the floor after, you didn't have to go off the field of play," Terry revealed to beIN Sports. "So last 10 or 15 minutes, he would sit me and Gary Cahill down and go: 'when the ball comes in the box, make sure you both go down - bump into each other and both go down because you can't both go off.'

"We'd never heard of that rule ever. So ball comes over in the last 10 minutes, head it away, Gaz goes down and I think 'I better go down'. So I dropped to the floor and the ref said 'you two off the pitch'. I said 'no that's not the rule, ask the linesman'. Mourinho was so far ahead with those little bits and you're talking small margins and the best managers find those little margins. Incredible."

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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Terry finished an illustrious 20-year career with Chelsea in 2017, with five Premier League titles, five FA Cups and a Champions League among the many trophies to his name. A large chunk of those prizes were collected during his time working with Mourinho, who now finds himself lumbering down in seventh in Serie A with Roma, having won them their first-ever European title with the 2021-22 Europa Conference League crown.


Jose Mourinho John Terry Chelsea

Gary Cahill John Terry Chelsea

Jose Mourinho John Terry Chelsea

DID YOU KNOW? Terry is the second-fastest player to reach 200 Premier League wins with 305 games, behind only David Silva for Manchester City, who reached the same total in 289 matches.

WHAT NEXT FOR TERRY? As the former England and Chelsea man previews the World Cup, he will be hoping the Three Lions will be able to snatch a victory against holder's France in Saturday's quarter-final.