Terry's England chapter comes to a close
(Sports Network) - In the 78 games in which John Terry represented England, he did so with an incredible amount of passion and intensity.
Only four players have captained the Three Lions more than the Chelsea defender, who is regarded as one of the best at his position.
But the problem for Terry has never been so much about his performance on the field.
The 31-year-old surprisingly announced his retirement from the international game on Sunday, one day before he was set to face an FA hearing over a charge that he racially abused QPR defender Anton Ferdinand in a Premiership match last October.
The fact that Terry is still facing the FA charge when he was cleared of the same accusation by the courts in July is curious, but it also may be an indication that Terry's baggage has become too much for the FA to continue to carry.
It almost seems like Terry is being tried twice for the same crime, but it's also hard to feel sorry for someone who seems to have a habit of putting himself in precarious situations.
Since he was named England captain in 2006, succeeding David Beckham, Terry has become the only player to be stripped of the captain's armband on two separate occasions.
The first incident took place in 2010 when Fabio Capello, who was the England boss at the time, relieved Terry of his duties amid allegations that he had an affair with the ex-girlfriend of former teammate Wayne Bridge.
Bridge also had been a member of England's national team and the incident caused a bit of a division in the side, but it wouldn't be the last time.
Terry was restored as captain one year later, but the incident involving Ferdinand and the charge of racial abuse once again called his character into question.
This time it was the FA, not Capello, which stripped Terry of his captain's duties, prompting the manager to resign.
There were those who felt Terry should not have been included in England's Euro 2012 side this past summer because his trial for racial abuse had yet to take place.
And Terry's inclusion in the team also ruled out the possibility of England veteran Rio Ferdinand, Anton's brother, being named in the side.
Capello's resignation occurred just a few months before the start of the European Championships, which left new manager Roy Hodgson little time to prepare for it.
Now, with Terry abruptly announcing his retirement, Hodgson is left in another tough spot with the manager having to replace his defensive leader in the midst of World Cup qualifying.
The timing is not great, and England might suffer a bit in the short term, but it appears as though the FA has had enough.
There was a time when Terry looked like the right man to lead England, but he has been mostly a lightning rod for controversy and a dividing force in the national team over the past few years.
It's sad really because Terry could have been remembered for the pride he took in wearing the England shirt.
Yet he is more likely to go down as the controversial former captain who couldn't stay out of his own way.