Date: 2nd February 2012 at 2:15am
Written by:
John Terry spits at Carlos Tevez during the Champions League final

John Terry spits at Carlos Tevez during the Champions League final

News that England captain John Terry will not face trial for his alleged racial abuse of Anton Ferdinand has been met with shock and disappointment by many and plunged England’s Euro 2012 preparations into confusion.

The national side now faces the prospect of being led by a man who could conceivably return from the tournament and then be convicted of racially abusing a fellow professional. Then there’s the point of how can Rio Ferdinand realistically play alongside someone who’s awaiting trial for racially abusing his younger brother? How can black players feel happy being led by someone who’s accused of using racist insults at another player? In fact how can any professional, black or white be happy about the whole situation?

“Innocent until proven guilty” is the mantra of not just the Terry supporters but also the pseudo liberal faction seeking to give everyone a ‘fair trial.’ Well here’s where the plot thickens, for starters that rule may apply in the eyes of the law, but does it apply in the court of public opinion, does it mean that Terry is actually innocent of the charges? Does it mean that Terry didn’t call Ferdinand a “f*cking black c*nt”?

The presumption of innocence is a legal rule that applies to the criminal justice system, the fact that there are pending criminal charges mean the prosecution have determined in all likelihood Terry is guilty. In the past pending criminal charges have been more than sufficient grounds for suspending someone from employment or refusing to allow them to hold an office.

Terry may be guilty and he may not, but the fact that the Crown Prosecution Service believe they have enough evidence to take the Chelsea skipper to trial tells its own story. The fact that Sky TV are forced to blur out the footage of Terry’s rant at Ferdinand seems pretty ominous as does the fact that the entire Queens Park Rangers team were unwilling to shake Terry’s hand.

When it comes to the “innocent until proven guilty” argument another problem is that hasn’t been the way the FA have dealt with matters in the past. When Alan Smith was called into the England squad back in 2003, he was subsequently removed when the FA realised the police were charging him with throwing a bottle back into the crowd at Elland Road during a clash with United.

Jonathan Woodgate and Lee Bowyer were suspended from representing the England team by the FA while they awaited trial for the alleged assault of an Asian student named Sarfraz Neijeb.

Rio Ferdinand was suspended by the FA pending his drug test hearing, a move that almost caused the entire squad to strike ahead of the Euro 2004 qualifier against Turkey.

It seems other players have been suspended from the England team before their trials or hearings have been seen, yet Terry is allowed to represent his country while his is still pending.

What’s even worse are the nature of Terry’s charges, he’s not just accused of abusing a fellow professional but of racially abusing them, an act which is abhorrent to any right thinking decent individual. Should Terry be found guilty, then we now face the prospect of watching a man who captained our nation, be convicted of using racist abuse.

Let’s not forget that even if Terry isn’t found guilty it doesn’t necessarily mean he didn’t call Ferdinand what he’s been charged with, simply that there isn’t enough evidence to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.

Even if Terry is found not guilty and even if he didn’t actually say what he’s been accused of, is that going to stop there being severe rifts in the England dressing room at Euro 2012?

No matter what some may claim about Gary Cahill and Joleon Lescott, the fact is a fit Rio Ferdinand, deserves to be in the England squad and surely that would cause a problem for dressing room harmony.

The FA have bungled badly by not suspending Terry from the England team as soon as he was charged, banking on the trial being before the Euros.

The fact that the trial has been set at such a later date due to Terry’s Chelsea team mates not being available until after the season merely adds to the air of ridiculousness surrounding the entire affair.

Terry deserves a fair trial, yes, but does he deserve to lead his country or even play for it, while awaiting his trial, others haven’t been afforded such accommodation so why should he?

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37 responses to “One Rule For John Terry One Rule For Everyone Else”

  1. Blue_Mel says:

    Mr Highly Unbiassed United Fan…oh there we go again – inconsistency…United Fan and unbiassed in the same sentence..stupid me!

    http://football-talk.co.uk/54813/video-patrice-%3Cspan%20class='highlight'%3Eevra%3C/span%3E-caught-on-tape-using-n-word-in-foul-mouthed-chelsea-rant/

    I am still waiting for Evra’s trial for racism egainst Chelsea players.. do you have any date in mind?? and do you think he should be bammed from playing for United in the meantime?

    Yours sincerely!
    Mel
    a Chelsea Fan!

    • Justin Mottershead says:

      That’s a dead link, in all honesty I’d like to see what it was.

    • Justin Mottershead says:

      Someone else posted the link. I don’t think you can ban someone for what they said on a balcony while playing for Monaco eight years ago. Also don’t think he was racist.

    • MP says:

      this apparently ‘Biased’ opinion was backed up by a number of FACTS.

      Good article. Although i still don’t understand why there will be a trail AFTER the Euro’s (conviniently)… isn’t this the same situation as the suarez/evra case?

  2. chris says:

    It’s a good point, I’ll maybe give Terry a bit more benefit of a doubt than you but he seems to constantly upset teamates & fellow country men, Should he really be england captain?

  3. Gabe from Sydney says:

    I cannot believe the paranoia that is going aroound on this subject. Firstly to be honest Rio would be very lucky even to be chosen in the squad given his form and injury problems. Second Anton never heard Terry say anything and that is on record. He became indignant and was wound up based on a video clip whch I believe people can interpret differently and doesn’t cover the full content of what terry says that he said. I believe in letting the Courts deal with this but am frankly very surprised that it has even gone that fare. Political correctness has many strange bedfellows these days and we are worse for it. The FA have no right to suspend Terry and they cannot prove he has done anything wrong. No matter what you think of him this is not an action that can be taken. Imagine if Rooney was copping the same abuse? You would be the first to defend him wouldn’t you? So now that it will be heard in court I am happy to leave it at that.

  4. notagolfer says:

    “the prosecution have determined in all likelihood Terry is guilty.”

    being charged with a crime means you are guilty? ain’t this country great? it’s not like anyone has ever been found innocent on a court of law…if they are on trial they did it. the end.

    & btw. the rule regarding england players awaiting trial was changed. maybe you missed it. it was following the public outcry over the smith incident you mentioned in your article. well researched.

    that was why steven gerrard was able to play 7 times for england while awaiting trial for gbh. andy carroll is a more recent example of a player who played for england while awaiting trial…this time for abh. both crimes that carry a more significant punishment than a £2500 fine.

    so it isn’t one rule for terry & another for everyone else. it’s the same rules for everyone whether you like them or not.

    or are you advocating changing the rules just so john terry will be dropped from the england team? i bet you will be now…that’ll probably be your next article.

    you do bring up the excellent example of woodgate tho. he was actually found GUILTY of a racially motivated ASSAULT…& went on to play for england. he was back in the england squad the very next season despite barely playing through injury.

    & bowyer altho acquitted had a prior conviction for racially abusing an asian worker in a fast food restaurant…which didn’t stop him playing for england at under-21 or senior level afterwards.

    excellent examples of 2 players actually convicted of race-related crimes far worse than the one john terry is accused of…& both went on to play for england with no issues. no problems with dressing room harmony…nothing.

    meanwhile you want someone who has been convicted of NOTHING to be barred from england duty.

    & the real reason? cos that is the only way rio will get an undeserved place in capello’s squad.

    if ashley cole, the guy standing right next to terry during the incident & the only person beside john terry who actually knows what happened (& who is going to testify for the defence), is fine with john terry playing for england…perhaps you should be too.

    • Justin Mottershead says:

      Yes there’s always the chance that Terry will be found not guilty but is it really worth the risk? The other players don’t know whether he’s guilty or innocent and theres every chance some of them may believe he is. That could cause friction straight away between so-called England team mates- would you want to play alongside someone you believed racially abused a fellow pro? Also there seems to be pretty conclusive video evidence that we can all see, that he did call Ferdinand a f*cking black c*nt. It’s not like it’d be a massive shock if he’s found guilty.

      Then there’s your comment on the ‘rule’ being changed. Well actually there are no such rules and they weren’t changed. Each case is taken on its own merits and its up to the FA whether they suspend someone from playing for England or not.

      Mark Palios for example was notorious when he was FA Chief Executive for being strict and trying to enforce a ban on players- others are not.

      Of all the cases you’ve mentioned, Gerrard’s and Carroll’s could never have had a negative effect on the dressing room, while Woodgate’s affray on an Asian student is unlikely to make players find it difficult to play alongside him- or indeed be captained by him. Terry racially abusing a fellow player could. How Bowyer abusing a fast food worker is worse than what Terry is accused of I’m not quite sure.

      You’re point about me writing this to see Rio get in the England squad, couldn’t be further from the truth.

      Here’s an article I wrote several months ago regarding Rio Ferdinand and England.

      http://redflagflyinghigh.com/2011/10/lets-hear-it-for-the-boy/why-its-either-england-or-united-for-ferdinand

      Finally Ashley Cole’s opinion on Terry may be good enough for you but in all honesty it isn’t for me and may not be for other fans or some of the players.

      • notagolfer says:

        “Yes there’s always the chance that Terry will be found not guilty but is it really worth the risk?”

        yes. it is worth the risk that they would be unfairly punishing an innocent man. it would also send the message to other england players that if they were (perhaps unfairly or wrongly) accused of something, then they would be hung out to dry by the fa & england management without waiting for the jury to come back in (so to speak).

        “there seems to be pretty conclusive video evidence that we can all see”

        it isn’t that conclusive. there is no sound & terry is partially obscured for a portion of what he says. the whole point is that it isn’t conclusive.

        “Then there’s your comment on the ‘rule’ being changed. Well actually there are no such rules and they weren’t changed.”

        it was policy. that is a fact. dennis wise fell foul of it as did rio ferdinand & the aforementioned bowyer & woodgate. the policy was changed following the alan smith incident thus allowing gerrard & carroll to represent their country while awaiting trial. john terry has already played for england since this broke too. it certainly is not “one rule for john terry” as can be seen from the gerrard & carroll examples. so your headline is factually incorrect.

        “Gerrard’s and Carroll’s could never have had a negative effect on the dressing room”.

        beating people up is not frowned upon in england dressing rooms? why not? & their defence was “he started it” rather than terry’s defence of “i didn’t do it”. yeah. soooo much better.

        “Woodgate’s affray on an Asian student is unlikely to make players find it difficult to play alongside him”

        he was convicted of a race related assault. why would england players be ok with that but not this?

        “How Bowyer abusing a fast food worker is worse than what Terry is accused of I’m not quite sure.”

        he repeatedly racially abused & threw chairs at workers in a fast food restaurant in a completely unprovoked attack…because they had run out of food. work it out.

        “You’re point about me writing this to see Rio get in the England squad, couldn’t be further from the truth.”

        you said it was a “fact” that a fit rio ferdinand should be in the england squad in this article. the only tag on the article is “ferdinand” & that is the only line about him…& the only line not saying terry shop be dropped from the england squad. 2+2=?

        “Finally Ashley Cole’s opinion on Terry may be good enough for you but in all honesty it isn’t for me and may not be for other fans or some of the players”

        he is the only guy who knows what happened. he was there. RIGHT THERE. where were you? & you claim to know better than him? of course you do.

        i would also add that IF terry is found guilty then the book should be thrown at him. but he hasn’t been found guilty & you simply cannot punish someone for something that MAYBE did POSSIBLY.

  5. notagolfer says:

    blue mel was probably referring to this;

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEwLkCRziD8

  6. Sir LX Ferguson says:

    Nah, Ferdinand won’t be chosen for the Squad. If he does snub the handshake, then he can rather retire from International games, cause Capello won’t drop Terry for sure, and Ferdinand to be palying alongside him, i can only say LOL!

  7. Stiller says:

    John Terry does deserve to play for England he is guilty of 2 much wrong against his fellow countrymen. Wayne bridge now Anton. I don’t think he is being playing thst good all season. England have other defender that can play. England will never win a trophy with him as captain or in the team. I tjink it’s time for jagielka lescot Cahill n smallings to get the nod. John Terry and gerrard time r up. It’s time for capello to start blood the next generation that includes cleverly wilshere Sturridge welbeck baines young chamberlain Richards rodwell jones and smallings. I can see them winning a trophy I tjink they make one of the most naturally gifted generation of English players in years.

  8. John Tring says:

    I can only say one thing: The FA are so spineless they will clutch at anything. And that fat over-rated guy AKA JT should not play for England. For footballing reasons alone. He’s well past his prime if ever there was one. He’s a liability and ABV is finding out to his horror. Capello? What does he care? Collecting fantastic money for doing , well, nothing and he’ll laugh all the to Italian or is it Swiss bank after July. So does Euro 2012 matter to him>? What a stupid mess and some people are just plain lucky.

  9. Richard says:

    Rio won’t be in the squad because he’s past it, pure and simple.
    Innocent until proven guilty.
    As the previous poster has pointed out so many flaws in your argument already I won’t bang on.
    JT is the best centre back and captain in the country.
    Him and his fame have serious issues off the pitch but on it is what matters as far as my interest is concerned.

  10. Richard says:

    Rio won’t be in the squad because he’s past it, pure and simple.
    Innocent until proven guilty.
    As the previous poster has pointed out so many flaws in your argument already I won’t bang on.
    JT is the best centre back and captain in the country.
    Him and his family have serious issues off the pitch but on it is what matters as far as my interest is concerned.