Capello includes Terry despite probe
Updated: 2011-11-07 07:54
Chelsea's John Terry gestures during their English Premier League soccer match against Blackburn Rovers in Blackburn, northern England, Nov 5, 2011. [Photo/Agencies]
LONDON - England captain John Terry will be included in the squad to face world champion Spain and Sweden despite being under investigation for racism, manager Fabio Capello has confirmed.
Terry is the subject of ongoing inquiries by the Metropolitan Police and the English FA for allegedly hurling a racist epithet at QPR defender Anton Ferdinand during Chelsea's defeat in the west London derby.
Capello, however, has ruled out dropping the defender for the upcoming international friendlies, insisting the England captain remains "innocent until proven guilty".
Capello, who announces his squad on Sunday, told a briefing for reporters that Terry had been included after meeting senior FA officials last week to discuss the issue.
"He is in the squad, we had a meeting with the FA yesterday. We spoke about John Terry. I think he's innocent until proven guilty," Capello said. "For this reason I select him."
Capello said however he had warned the Chelsea player he may not play in both games, which will see England play Spain at Wembley on Saturday before facing Sweden three days later.
"I spoke with him and said I don't know if he will play because I want to see new players. If there are injuries, if there are suspensions or something. He was happy," said Capello, who had also sounded out Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas on his decision.
"I think there is no problem with John Terry in this moment. We need to wait to see what happens with the FA and police investigations. But for me, I can tell you, he's innocent until proven guilty."
Capello said he had seen no evidence of racial tensions within the England squad before or in English soccer in general.
"I've never heard or seen a racism problem in English football. The fans never boo (black players). They only boo a player because he left a club and joined another team. Racist problems between the players don't exist," he said.
If Terry was dropped for either game, it would only be for purely soccer reasons, Capello said.
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