JOHN Terry yesterday denied he “snapped” and racially abused Anton Ferdinand over sex taunts from his Premier League opponent.
The Chelsea skipper agreed he had been “stitched up right good and proper” over the on-pitch clash that led to him appearing in the dock.
Terry, 31, is accused of calling QPR defender Ferdinand a “f****** black ****”.
Prosecutor Duncan Penny suggested the former England captain “snapped” when Ferdinand made jibes about his alleged affair with former team-mate Wayne Bridge’s ex-girlfriend.
The lawyer said: “You’re not a racist are you? But you used racist language because you snapped and it was instinctive. You were fed up with people abusing you over the issue with your wife.”
Married father-of-two Terry replied: “It was almost two years on. If I was going to snap, I would have snapped long before.”
He insisted he had heard the Wayne Bridge taunt “100 times, probably a million times”.
Terry claims he was sarcastically repeating the words that centre-half Ferdinand mistakenly thought he had used.
Mr Penny asked why he had repeated the racial abuse — which included the C word.
The prosecutor said: “You said that your response was to repeat back, ‘a black ****’, or, ‘calling me a black ****?’. How about, ‘what?’ Straightforward ‘what?’”
Terry replied: “I had never been accused of it on a football pitch and repeated it back.
“Hindsight’s a wonderful thing. At the time I was shocked, I was angry, you can’t control your emotions.”
The defender said he would have repeated back the word ‘n*****’ if it had been used.
Terry listened as a Football Association interview he took part in five days after the clash at Loftus Road on October 23 last year was played at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, central London.
He told investigator Jennifer Kennedy he believed Ferdinand shouted the words “black ****” at him during the game and understood the QPR player to be wrongly accusing him of shouting the slur.
Terry said: “I have been called a lot of things in my football career, on and off the pitch, but being called a racist I am not prepared to take.
“I am not having Anton thinking that about me or anyone else. That’s not my character at all.”
The court had heard how tempers had flared when the two players clashed towards the end of the televised match, which QPR won 1-0.
Ferdinand, 27, taunted Terry over the alleged fling with Bridge’s former girlfriend Vanessa Perroncel.
Terry said: “He was doing a sort of pumping action and saying, ‘Shagging Wayne Bridge’s missus’.
“I said, ‘F*** off, F*** off’. Like to say I’ve heard it all before.
“This is when Anton said, ‘calling me a black ****’. I thought he was saying I had called him a black ****. I felt angry.
“I responded by saying ‘black ****’ and ‘knobhead’. I was accusing him of being a knobhead for accusing me.”
Mr Penny asked: “You have been stitched up right good and proper, haven’t you?”
The player said: “Yes, Anton was accusing me of being a racist.”
Terry denies a racially-aggravated public order offence and faces a maximum fine of £2,500 if found guilty. The trial continues today.
HERE YOU GO!!
Rio man ‘nudged Anton’
ANTON Ferdinand showed little interest in pursuing the race case with police until his brother Rio’s publicity agent got involved, the court heard.
Detective Constable David Doherty told the hearing it took cops around half a dozen attempts to contact Anton and that he was reluctant to talk to them.
But they received a signed statement from him after Man United star Rio’s PR man Justin Rigby took an interest.
John Terry’s QC, George Carter-Stephenson, claimed Mr Rigby had heard from a newspaper that police were preparing to take no further action, which would have “ramifications” including Anton being willing to take out a civil action.
DC Doherty said: “He was not pushing me to make a charge decision, it was not my decision at the end of the day.”