Captain John Terry knows he must keep performing if he is to remain in the Chelsea team for the forthcoming season and would leave the club if he was no longer a regular starter.
The 34-year-old defender played every minute last season as the Blues regained the Premier League title and looked a player reborn after struggling during the reigns of Andre Villas-Boas and Rafa Benitez especially.
But manager Jose Mourinho is anything but sentimental and would quickly drop the former England captain were his standards to slip below the high expectations he has for each member of his squad and, with the club's policy of handing one year contracts to over 30-year-olds, Terry would find himself heading for the exit door.
"I am not taking anything for granted," the Chelsea captain said.
"The manager has said if I can keep my form, I am in the side. But, if I don’t keep my form, he will have no qualms about taking me out and putting someone else in.
"We have an honest relationship, I don’t doubt that he trusts me. Hopefully I can repay that, because he has been superb to me. I will give him everything.
"And he has been a father figure in my career so I owe him an awful lot. I realise one day that my career will come to an end so I want to give everything these next few years.
"Every summer I work more or less every day to give myself the best chance. If it comes to that point where I am left out of the side, I know it’s not through any fault of not trying."
Legend Petr Cech was marginalised last season after the emergence of Thibaut Courtois at Stamford Bridge and, while Terry praised the way the goalkeeper reacted at the training ground, he would not follow him to a Premier League rival.
The most successful post-war captain added: "I could handle being out of the team. No doubt people like me and Steven want to play. Those are our natural instincts. When you play your whole career, it's hard.
"(But) Petr Cech was a model professional last year and that is why he got the move he wanted, because of how well he reacted around the place.
"I have seen other players go the other way. I certainly would go down the Petr route and continue giving everything to the squad.
"If I then felt Chelsea were going to release me or thought I had nothing else to give, but I thought I could, then of course I would still want to continue to play. But that would not be in the Premier League."