Skip to main content

Mourinho defends Terry in racism case

updated 4:13 AM EDT, Fri September 28, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Real Madrid boss backs Terry following FA punishment
  • Terry captained Mourinho's Chelsea side to the Premier League title on two occasions
  • Real Madrid insists Terry 'is not a racist'
  • Mourinho says he has never felt racism in the dressing room

(CNN) -- Former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has launched a staunch defense of John Terry declaring: "He is not a racist."

Chelsea captain Terry was handed a four-match ban and a $356,000 fine by the English Football Association on Thursday after being found guilty of racially abusing Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.

Terry, who captained Mourinho's Chelsea to consecutive Premier League titles in 2005 and 2006, remains close friends with the Portuguese manager, who is now Real Madrid's coach, following their successful time at Stamford Bridge.

Football pioneer on racist abuse
'It's Not Black & White'

Terry retires from England amid racism case

"He is not a racist," Mourinho told CNN in an exclusive interview.

"That's 100%. Chelsea had a squad where we had 12 African players in the squad. It was a fantastic squad and he had always a great relation with every one of them."

While defending Terry, Mourinho insisted the FA had been right to punish Terry.

"But in football it can happen, and I know 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.

"Probably, he had a racist comment or a "racist" 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.

Racism remains "significant" problem in English football

"But please, don't say that he is a racist, because I know what I am saying. Didier Drogba will say, Geremi will say, Claude Makelele will say, all of them will say that he is not a racist."

The incident involving Terry is the second high-profile case of racist abuse on the football field following the incident between Liverpool's Luis Suarez and Manchester United's Patrice Evra last year.

The Liverpool striker was banned for eight matches and fined $65,000 after being found guilty of misconduct, regarding "using insulting words towards" Evra during the game at Anfield on October 15 2011.

Soccer's 'Three Degrees'
Laureus panel discusses racism

And asked whether he though there is still racism in football, Mourinho replied: "I never felt it. Never. In a dressing room, I have never felt it and I've always had African players in every one of my teams."

Terry's punishment comes just days after he announced his retirement from international football, claiming that the FA had made his position within the national team 'untenable'.

In July the 31-year-old defender had been found not guilty of a racially aggravated public order offence at Westminster Magistrates' Court.

However the FA requires a lower burden of proof than an English court and it took the decision to bring Terry before its disciplinary system.

Terry found guilty in racism case

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 6:23 AM EST, Tue December 16, 2014
After 20 years, more than 300 goals and a host of major honors, Thierry Henry has called time on his glittering football career.
updated 5:14 AM EST, Fri December 19, 2014
They do things differently at Sociedad Deportiva Eibar, up in the mist-cloaked valleys of the Basque country. And it is working.
updated 8:53 AM EST, Wed December 10, 2014
He might be struggling to score goals for Liverpool, but Mario Balotelli's cheeky tweet about the British monarch hit the spot during the World Cup.
updated 8:53 AM EDT, Tue October 28, 2014
How Real Madrid's new stadium will look
They splash the cash on the world's best players, now Real Madrid are giving the Bernabeu the same treatment with a bling makeover.
updated 9:09 AM EDT, Mon October 27, 2014
Football world mourns South African captain Senzo Meyiwa who was shot and killed during a botched robbery in a township near Johannesburg.
updated 9:48 AM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
A man as a Roman centurion and who earn his living by posing with tourists gestures in front of the Colosseum during a protest where some of his colleagues climbed on the monument on April 12, 2012 in Rome. The costumed centurions are asking for the right to work there after they were banned following a decision by local authorities.
From the ancient ruins of Rome, a new empire rises. But the eyes of the city's newest gladiator light up at thoughts of the Colosseum.
updated 12:22 PM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
Once part of Germany's largest Jewish sports club, now he's the first ISIS suspect to stand trial in a country left shocked by his alleged radicalization.
updated 10:11 AM EDT, Fri October 17, 2014
One goal in eight matches for new club Liverpool, and dumped by the Italian national team -- Mario Balotelli has yet to shine on his English return.
updated 2:19 PM EDT, Sat October 18, 2014
Ched Evans smiles during the Wales training session ahead of their UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier against England on March 25, 2011 in Cardiff, Wales.
Should a convicted rapist, who has served their time in prison, be allowed to resume their old job? What if that job was as a high-profile football player?
updated 8:47 AM EDT, Thu October 16, 2014
After 10 years of golden glory, it's easy to see how Lionel Messi has taken his place among the football gods.
updated 6:34 AM EDT, Thu October 16, 2014
A football fan wipes a tear after Inter Milan's Argentinian defender Javier Zanetti has greeted fans following the announcement of his retirement before the start of the Italian seria A football match Inter Milan vs Lazio, on May 10, 2014, in San Siro Stadium In Milan
When will the tears stop? A leading Italian football club is pursuing a new direction -- under the guidance of its new Indonesian owner.
updated 6:41 PM EDT, Mon October 13, 2014
Norwegian 15-year-old Martin Odegaard is the youngest player ever to feature in a European Championships qualifying match.
updated 9:10 AM EDT, Fri October 10, 2014
After revolutionizing cricket with its glitzy Twenty20 league, India has now thrown large sums of money at a new football venture.
updated 10:53 AM EDT, Thu October 2, 2014
Get ruthless. That is Rio Ferdinand's message to soccer's authorities in the fight to tackle the scourge of racism.
updated 9:28 AM EDT, Wed September 10, 2014
A picture taken on May 16, 2014 shows 15-year-old Norwegian footballer Martin Oedegaard of club Stroemsgodset IF cheering during a match in Drammen, Norway. Oedegaard is set to become Norways youngest player ever in the national football team.
He's just 15 and the world is seemingly already at his feet. Norway's Martin Odegaard is being sought by Europe's top clubs.
ADVERTISEMENT