British soccer player owns up to using racial slur, accepts suspension
(CNN) – Chelsea captain John Terry has opted not to appeal the English Football Association’s verdict that he racially abused Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.
Former England captain Terry was fined $356,000 and banned for four matches after English soccer’s rulemakers found him guilty earlier this month.
Terry apologized for the expletives he used during the match at QPR’s Loftus Road stadium in October 2011, when he used the words “f*****g black c**”.
“After careful consideration, I have decided not to appeal against the FA judgment,” the 31-year-old said in a statement released by his management company.
“I want to take this opportunity to apologize to everyone for the language I used in the game against Queens Park Rangers last October.
“Although I’m disappointed with the FA judgment, I accept that the language I used, regardless of the context, is not acceptable on the football field or indeed in any walk of life.”
Terry was cleared of any criminal charges by a London magistrates’ court in July, but the FA uses the “balance of probabilities” as its standard of proof as opposed to the “beyond reasonable doubt” used in English law.
An FA report detailing its reasons for sanctioning Terry described the central defender’s defense as “improbable, implausible and contrived”.
“As I stated in the criminal case, with the benefit of hindsight my language was clearly not an appropriate reaction to the situation for someone in my position,” continued the statement from Terry.
“My response was below the level expected by Chelsea football club, and by me, and it will not happen again.
“Looking forward, I will continue to do my part in assisting the club to remove all types of discriminatory behavior from football. I am extremely grateful for the consistent support of Chelsea, the fans and my family.”
In a statement released on Thursday, Chelsea said additional in-house discplinary action had been taken against Terry but that “in accordance with our long-standing policy, that disciplinary action will remain confidential.”
Chelsea also condemned the language used by Terry, saying: “The club firmly believes such language is not acceptable and fell below the standards expected of John as a Chelsea player.”
The evidence given to the FA by Terry’s Chelsea teammate Ashley Cole was also criticized in the report, leading to the left-back calling England’s ruling body a “bunch of twats” on Twitter.
Cole has since apologized “unreservedly” and been fined £90,000 ($145,000) by the FA.