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Wednesday 13 December 2017

No say for Fabio as English FA pull plug on Terry captaincy

The English Football Association yesterday stripped John Terry of the England captaincy due to his racism court trial and revealed the decision had been taken without Fabio Capello's involvement.

The England manager has always insisted he should have control of team matters, including the captaincy, but the FA board, led by chairman David Bernstein, decided they had to step in after confirmation that the trial will not take place until after Euro 2012.

Capello, who will fly back from Italy at the weekend to attend Sunday's Chelsea v Manchester United match, was not involved in the discussions but will be free to pick Terry for friendlies and Euro 2012 and to choose the replacement skipper -- likely to be Steven Gerrard.

There have been reports that Terry, 31, is bitter at the decision and is considering retiring from international football -- and his club manager Andres Villas-Boas criticised the FA's action.

Terry has been accused of racially abusing QPR's Anton Ferdinand, a charge which he denies, and will stand trial on July 9. A spokesman for the player declined to comment yesterday.

Capello himself had stuck by his belief that Terry should be regarded as innocent until proven guilty and keep the armband.

It is the second time the Chelsea captain has been stripped of the England armband having also lost it two years ago after allegations surrounding his private life came to light.

Bernstein had spoken to all members of the 14-strong board yesterday about the issue and explained the decision to Terry and Capello over the phone.

The FA said in a statement: "This decision has been taken due to the higher profile nature of the England captaincy, on and off the pitch, and the additional demands expected of the captain leading into, and during, a tournament.

"This decision in no way infers any suggestion of guilt in relation to the charge made against John Terry."



ARGUED

New independent board member Heather Rabbatts, the Jamaican-born businesswoman and former Millwall deputy chairman and the first woman to be an FA director, is understood to have argued that anyone in public or a senior business position facing such a trial would have to stand aside.

Chelsea boss Villas-Boas said Terry would remain as club captain and criticised the FA's actions.

He said: "We have to really question what was their thinking process over that one.

"I don't agree with it but you have to ask the FA about it and the people responsible for the decision.

"The statement from the FA is pretty clear on what was their decision-making. I don't agree. John will continue to be our captain and I have nothing further to say."

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