Having been cleared by a criminal court, soccer player John Terry is facing an internal hearing. So is another player over a similar alleged racial insult.
After Terry's acquittal came claims that he was set up. Whether or not there is any truth in this latter, it was reported that Rio Ferdinand, the brother of the "victim" Anton Ferdinand, objected to another black player, Ashley Cole, testifying on Terry's behalf. Ferdinand has now been charged by the sport's ruling body, the Football Association, with sending an offending "tweet", which allegedly referred to Cole as a Choc Ice.
Incredibly, after this matter was reported to Derbyshire Police, they were said to be investigating it. Thankfully, we are not seeing a replay of the ludicrous scenes in Central London in which a district judge wasted a week of precious court time. Hopefully this nonsense will be dealt with expediently with either an acquittal (which seems unlikely) or an apology and a fine for Ferdinand.
The FA would do well too to review its code of conduct for players regarding the use of Twitter and other social media.
Although this nonsense has been hyped up to ridiculous heights, there is a real issue here. Football players are paid silly sums of money - at least at this level - and as public figures they have a duty to behave responsibly. That means no public insults of any kind, and none of the unsavoury behaviour in bars and other public places which earlier this year led to Welsh international Ched Evans being gaoled for rape.
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