Aston Villa skipper John Terry reportedly bade farewell to his teammates following Saturday's playoff final defeat to Fulham.
The Villans suffered a 1-0 loss at Wembley Stadium to condemn them to a third season of Championship football.
As a result of the agonising setback, Steve Bruce is expected to be tasked with cutting the wage bill this summer to balance the books, with Terry the highest earner on £60,000 a week.
According to the Daily Mail, the Chelsea legend spent 20 seconds hugging Bruce outside the Villa dressing room on Saturday, while also telling his teammates "to stay in touch".
Terry, whose contract will officially expire at the start of next month, has been tipped to see out his career in the United States or take up a player-coach role elsewhere.