FA gives reasons for Terry ban
5 October 2012
The Football Association has published its reasons for banning John Terry for alleged racist remarks towards Anton Ferdinand.
The FA’s regulatory commission wrote that there was “no credible basis” to Terry’s assertion that he was repeating the offending phrase (“f**king black c**t”) back to Ferdinand, whom he alleges had accused him of racial abuse.
The 63-page ruling rejects Terry’s defence as “improbable, implausible and contrived”.
The legitimacy of evidence given by Terry’s Chelsea teammate Ashley Cole and club secretary David Barnard is also called into question.
Although Terry was cleared of any wrongdoing by a criminal court in July, the FA took the decision to charge the former England captain with misconduct and subsequently hand him a £220,000 fine and four-match ban.
The FA case was decided on the balance of probabilities, whereas the criminal case had to be proved beyond reasonable doubt.
Terry does however have 14 days to decide whether or not to appeal.
New evidence considered by the FA would appear to suggest that testimony given by Cole and Bernard was inconsistent and had evolved over time to fit Terry’s story.
In an interview with the FA five days after the match Cole says he heard a “b-word” but does not mention black, and in a later emailed statement adds that the word “Could have been Bridge”.
But a later email from Barnard added the words “black or Bridge” and his witness statement 10 months later claims Cole heard the word “c**t” in close proximity to the ‘b-word’. The commission found that Cole’s original evidence did not mention this word or the word “f**king”
The commission said: "All of this causes the commission to have very real concerns about the accuracy of Mr Barnard's recollection, and the motivation for the assertions that he makes in his witness statement about what Mr Cole said during the FA interview of him, particularly his alleged use of the word 'black' but also the words 'f**king' and 'c**t'."
A spokesman for Chelsea said: "As we said last week we recognise that John has the right to appeal. In view of this it would be inappropriate for us to comment further on the matter at this time."