Wednesday 29 March 2017

Gary Cahill: John Terry will be able to handle hostile crowd at QPR

Chelsea's captain John Terry. Photo: Reuters
Chelsea's captain John Terry. Photo: Reuters

Chelsea defender Gary Cahill has backed captain John Terry to shrug off a hostile reception when they head to Loftus Road to face QPR on Sunday.

It was on the same ground in 2011 that Terry was caught up in a race controversy with ex-QPR defender Anton Ferdinand, later cleared in court of racially abusing the player but banned for four matches and fined £220,000 by the English Football Association for 'using abusive language related to colour'.

"He has been through a lot football-wise in his career," Cahill said.

"He has been through so many good times, winning trophies and whatnot, and bad times.

"So in terms of personality he is obviously thick-skinned and that's why I say it won't affect him, and it won't affect us."

Terry was stripped of the England captaincy amid the fall-out, and subsequently announced his retirement from international football. On Sunday, he may come up against Anton Ferdinand's brother Rio, who branded him an 'idiot' over the affair, and the QPR fans can be expected to remind him of what happened. But Cahill added: "It's a local derby so the atmosphere will be intense and it will be another huge game to try to win.

"I think he has been there already. It's not as if it's the first time he has been back, he has played there."

Chelsea go into the weekend seven points clear of Arsenal having played a game less, but Cahill said there was no sense of easing up, with the Gunners still to come on the fixture list.

"There is still that element of pressure to finish the job," he said. "We've worked so hard this season to be where we are and to put ourselves in the position we are in, so we want to go all the way and finish it."

Chelsea are today reported to have bid for FC Tokyo's Japanese international striker Yoshinori Muto. The 22-year-old, who has scored once for his country in 11 appearances, has "not made any decision yet" on a possible move, the Japanese club are quoted as saying today.

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