Terry leads Chelsea to victory as Mourinho denies player is racist

Blues captain survives hostile reception at Arsenal and receives backing from his former manager

emirates stadium

John Terry and Chelsea emerged triumphant from another hostile reception yesterday as his former manager Jose Mourinho insisted he could not be regarded as a racist and never was by the club's contingent of black players.

Chelsea's captain braved a barracking from home supporters at the Emirates as his side won 2-1 with goals from Fernando Torres and Juan Mata. Terry will also be heartened by the support he received from Mourinho

"Chelsea had a squad in which we had 12 African players," said the Real Madrid manager. "It was a fantastic squad and he had always a great relation with every one of them. Please don't say he is a racist, because I know what I am saying. Didier Drogba will say, Gérémi will say, Claude Makélélé will say, all of them will say he is not a racist."

Mourinho did, however, suggest that Terry had been guilty of abusing Anton Ferdinand of Queens Park Rangers last year, for which he has incurred a four-match ban and heavy fine from the Football Association.

"It can happen that during a football match – because sometimes it's more than a game – sometimes you have reactions that don't represent what you are really," he told CNN.

"Probably, he had a racist comment or attitude against an opponent and, sometimes in football, we look to our opponents in the wrong way. But to pay, he has to be punished."

Mourinho declined to react to criticism by his club's president, Florentino Perez, who said yesterday: "He tells us he has managed clubs at the highest level but I tell him that first is Madrid, followed by Madrid, and then comes Madrid, such is the difference between us and the rest. We understand our own culture, those coming from outside don't."

Terry and his advisers want to see the full judgment of the FA's tribunal panel that found him guilty before deciding whether to appeal. It is likely to be released later this week. In the meantime, he is free to play, and yesterday he appeared unfazed in Chelsea's victory at Arsenal that extended their lead at the top of the Premier League as United surprisingly lost 2-3 to Tottenham at Old Trafford. At Craven Cottage, Manchester City came from behind to beat Fulham 2-1 at Craven Cottage.

Chelsea's manager, Roberto Di Matteo, who spoke to Terry before deciding to pick him, said: "I think he was the right choice. He showed his leadership qualities and what a good defender he is."

Arts and Entertainment
Joe Cocker performing on the Stravinski hall stage during the Montreux Jazz Festival, in Montreux, Switzerland in 2002
musicHe 'turned my song into an anthem', says former Beatle
News
Clarke Carlisle
sport
Sport
footballStoke City vs Chelsea match report
Arts and Entertainment
theatreThe US stars who've taken to UK panto, from Hasselhoff to Hall
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
News
newsIt was due to be auctioned off for charity
News
Coca-Cola has become one of the largest companies in the world to push staff towards switching off their voicemails, in a move intended to streamline operations and boost productivity
peopleCoca-Cola staff urged to switch it off to boost productivity
Environment
Sir David Attenborough
environment... as well as a plant and a spider
Voices
'That's the legal bit done. Now on to the ceremony!'
voicesThe fight for marriage equality isn't over yet, says Siobhan Fenton
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'