John Terry described in excruciating detail yesterday the sexual insults about his mother that are directed at him by rival supporters, in another extraordinary day in his trial on a racial abuse charge.
The Chelsea captain, in questioning by his own defence counsel, recounted to Westminster magistrates' court the words he said were first sung by Liverpool supporters about his mother, Sue. His team-mate Ashley Cole gave evidence in support of Terry's story that he did not racially abuse Anton Ferdinand during a game last season.
Terry admits that he said the words "f****** black c***" during the game between Queen's Park Rangers and Chelsea on 23 October 2011, but says he did so in the act of sarcastically repeating Ferdinand's accusation that he, Terry, had been racially abusive. The prosecution claim that Terry used the words as a racial insult in reaction to being goaded about an alleged affair with the former girlfriend of his erstwhile Chelsea team-mate Wayne Bridge. Ferdinand has given evidence saying he made no such complaint to Terry on the pitch.
Cole, 31, who was, he said, just "a car's length away" from Terry when the alleged incident took place, said he "could make out" Ferdinand saying "Bridgey" and "black" and "c***" in the eight-second episode.
Cole admitted that he could not hear either man during the confrontation, and that he had no expertise in lip-reading. He also said he did not think the case should have been brought to court.
Cole said: "If I repeated something I thought had been said it's totally different than [sic] saying it [without prompting]." The prosecutor Duncan Penny replied: "But if he [Terry] had said f****** black c***' [as an insult]?" Cole said: "I don't think racial abuse should be tolerated."
Terry had been asked by his defence counsel, George Carter-Stephenson QC, to explain to the court the abuse he suffered from fans. Terry replied: "My mum dated a guy from Liverpool for a while and the Liverpool fans made up a song that my mum loves Scouse c**k.'"
Under questioning from the Crown, Terry was asked if he had in fact said to Ferdinand: "I have had yours, you black c***" – an alleged taunt about Ferdinand's girlfriend or partner.
Terry said the episode in which he was alleged to have had an affair with Vanessa Perroncel, the former partner of Bridge, had changed attitudes towards him.
In the afternoon, the court was read a statement by Jose Mourinho. "During my proud and personal relationship with John Terry I have never once witnessed any demonstration of racism or racially abusive behaviour," the former Chelsea manager said.
Terry denies the charges. The case continues.