#3 John Terry to Aston Villa, 2017
This was another recent one and unfortunately, it was another contender for the most cringe-worthy unveiling of all time. It was no surprise when Chelsea’s longtime captain John Terry – out of contract at the end of 2016/17 – signed with Aston Villa as the Midlands club had been considering the signing for a number of weeks. And it was no surprise that the club announced the signing over social media, as it’s obviously the most popular way to do things these days.
The big surprise was the ridiculous way in which they did it. A video was posted to Villa’s Twitter page with a mock-up WhatsApp group chat – relevant to the time period at least – between Villa’s chairman Dr Tony Xia, manager Steve Bruce, and a handful of Villa’s players.
The “chat” went on to show Xia reveal Terry as a Villa player, and the likes of Jack Grealish and James Chester welcome him to the club before Gabby Agbonlahor suggests he’s the “best defender the club’s ever had”, causing Villa legends Olof Mellberg, Martin Laursen and Paul McGrath to “leave the chat”.
The worst bit? A classic bit of Terry egotism as he asks “who’s got the #26 shirt?” before the chat shows Jonathan Kodija post some embarrassed smileys. It’d be a genuinely funny joke – except this part actually happened. Terry has of course been granted #26 by his new club and knowing him, it was probably something he demanded before joining the Championship team!