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Chelsea Captain John Terry Accused of Racially Abusing QPR’s Anton Ferdinand. Is the Premier League a Hotbed of Racism?

By Periscope @periscopepost
Chelsea captain John Terry accused of racially abusing QPR’s Anton Ferdinand. Is the Premier League a hotbed of racism?

England captain John Terry with manager Fabio Capello. Photo credit: CR/World Football

England captain John Terry has been accused of racially abusing defender Anton Ferdinand during  the Premier League clash between Chelsea and Queens Park Rangers this weekend. The allegations come just a couple of weeks after Manchester United player Patrice Evra accused Liverpool’s Luis Suarez of making racial insults.

Denial. Terry has denied calling the QPR player “a black c***”, and said that video footage of the incident failed to show the context of the comments. According to The Guardian, the Chelsea captain said in a statement:” I thought Anton was accusing me of using a racist slur against him … I responded aggressively, saying I never used that term.” Ferdinand, who is the brother of Terry’s England team-mate Rio Ferdinand, has yet to comment.

Innocent until proven guilty? Mike Bonnet argued on The New Statesman‘s Staggers blog that the problem with this sort of incident is that it comes down to one player’s word against another – or to grainy camera footage. In any case, Bonnet said, footballers take allegations of racism seriously; and with good reason. “All too aware that mud sticks if you are seen to let it, the ferocity with which these charges are denied invites us to question the integrity of the accuser. The mistake we make is by accepting”, he said.

‘Put up with it’. Writing in – where else? – The Daily Mail, Steve Doughty suggested that whether the recent allegations are true or not, Evra and Ferdinand shouldn’t complain, as there is now less racism in football than there was 30 years ago: “Mr Evra and Mr Ferdinand, I know you feel insulted. But perhaps in this case you could just put up with it and get on with the game”, he said.

Kick it out. By contrast, Blackburn Rovers player Jason Roberts called for strong sanctions against any players proven to have made racist remarks. The striker told the BBC that he has endured racist abuse from fellow footballers “more times than I can count.”

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