Terry helped me through my Chelsea loan set-back, says Hector

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The Blues loan star opened up to Goal about his fellow defender's advice as both players prepare for domestic cup finals on Saturday evening


EXCLUSIVE

Chelsea loanee Michael Hector revealed that John Terry reached out to him after a difficult start to life at Eintracht Frankfurt.

Hector spoke highly of the Blues captain as both players prepare for cup finals this weekend, with Frankfurt set to face Borussia Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal on the same day that his parent club compete in the FA Cup against Arsenal.

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Chelsea signed Hector for £4 millon from Reading in 2015 but he has yet to make his first-team debut, despite training with Antonio Conte's side during pre-season. 

Hector has forced his way into Frankfurt's starting line-up, however, after an impressive semi-final display, but he started life in the Bundesliga with two red cards in his first two games. A boyhood Chelsea fan, the defender revealed how Terry helped him after his nightmare start. 

"He has helped me quite a bit since I signed for Chelsea," Hector told Goal ahead of the DFB-Pokal match. "During pre-season, I had to sing in front of him [in an initiation]. He took me to play golf with him and Carlo Cudicini.

"It was good for someone I respected and watched growing up to be so down to earth. He helped me through a tough time when I was training in the first team and in pre-season. Obviously when I joined I was 23 and had played a lot of games but to train with the team you support is completely different.

John Terry Chelsea

"It took me a week to understand that I deserve to be here and that I am a part of this. I am not a fan anymore, I've not just won a chance to train with the players but I had earned the right to play here and train with these players.

"He spoke to me well and even when I started badly at Frankfurt with the two red cards, he sent me a text saying, 'This is football, it is part of our jobs as a defender and these things happen.'

"He said you are a good defender and you will come out from it. When I scored he sent me a text saying, 'Well done and I am buzzing for you'. I was only around him for a month and for him to take time out to send me these messages, his messages mean a lot to me and it shows the type of person that he is.

"He is down to earth and he is such a nice guy. He is a football man and he has always looked after the new players that have come in. It is a pleasure for someone like that to look out for me."

Hector's journey in professional football has seen him play on loan at 13 different clubs, with 11 of those coming while he was at Reading. 

Hector

He is now aiming to beat Dortmund in the German Cup on Saturday evening and is happy with his decision to join Frankfurt, who have been one of the biggest surprise packages of the Bundesliga this season. 

"It was a wake up call [coming to Germany] for me. I needed this," he said. "To move away from home, I am older now. I am more mature, I make better decisions than when I was younger. Training and the German mentality has been drummed into me now.

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"Obviously, I am a laid back person off the field, but on the field I am a hard worker. I am a winner. I want to win every game in training, I want to win. The German mentality means 100 per cent every day.

"I am not used to that type of training. In England you build up during the week and then sometimes you slow down to save energy for the game. In Germany you give 100% leading up to the game and it is a different mentality.

"It is one my body is used to now. It will benefit me wherever I go, whether I go back to Chelsea or stay here, or go somewhere else. It will benefit me, learning to look after my body better. In Germany it has been a good decision to come here.

"I learned a lot from it and I will look back at the end of my career and think, 'Yes it was a great move to come here, and learn as well.' I am learning my position in a different culture. This is the highest league I have played in and when you make mistakes on the pitch, you get punished."

Chelsea have 35 players out on loan across Europe and beyond as they aim to develop their younger talent in competitive football. They even have a loan department which is headed by ex-players Eddie Newton and Paulo Ferreira, and Hector says they have been watching him progress this year. 

"They have come out here quite a bit, they have watched me," Hector continued. "They are happy with the games I have played but want me to play more games. There's areas I need to improve on, it will help with more minutes that I get.

"As a centre-half, you get better with age, with the experience of playing in the big games and playing consistently. I feel I have got better as a player and they feel I have gone up to another level as a player from being out here."

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