Neville says people should wait before judging Terry

Gary Neville does not believe John Terry should lose the England captaincy during the process of his court case for alleged racial abuse.

The Chelsea skipper is alleged to have made racist comments towards Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand during a Premier League game in October.

A not guilty plea was on Wednesday entered on Terry’s behalf at Westminster Magistrates’ Court and he will now not stand trial until 9th July.

That date is nine days after Euro 2012 concludes and there have consequently been calls for the 31-year-old to either step down as England’s captain or be stripped of the armband at the tournament.

Any decision to remove Terry as captain would rest with the Football Association and manager Fabio Capello, but Sky Sports pundit and former England defender Neville thinks the centre-back should be considered innocent until proven guilty.


Neville was in 2003 involved in the international set-up when strike action was threatened over the choice of former FA chief executive Mark Palios to ban Rio Ferdinand from playing against Turkey in a Euro 2004 qualifier amid his drug test affair.

And Manchester United legend Neville does not want to see a repeat of that scenario happen to Terry, who in 2010 was previously demoted as captain by Capello in the wake of revelations about his personal life.

In a Twitter conversation with journalist Matt Dickinson of The Times, Neville said: “To ban without process is to sentence that’s what I fought for back then (2003) and still believe.”

Neville was then asked by Dickinson if that still applied no matter how serious the charge and if there would be a point when the FA would feel it is inappropriate if a player is facing a case.

He said: “Act if it affects the performance of the team/individual.”

Questioned whether he thought this was the case with Terry, Neville replied: “Only the current manager and players can answer that. My war is over!”