Capello warned about "Toxic" Terry

Taking John Terry to the European Championship finals could create a "toxic" atmosphere in the England camp. That’s the message that some football insiders have sent to the England manager Fabio Capello.

Terry’s trial for alleged racial abuse of Anton Ferdinand will not be heard until 9 July, after the finals in Poland and Ukraine. Several influential voices are suggesting that it is untenable for Capello to include the captain in his squad.

The Reading footballer Jason Roberts, who campaigns for the anti-racism group Kick It Out, tweeted, "Believe me, the dressing room at the Euros will be TOXIC unless the correct decision is made." He added, "I do not believe that the England captain should go to the Euros."

Piara Power, the executive director of Football Against Racism, joined in: "Should John Terry remain as England captain through the Euros? I can't see how he can. To be captain means to be the leader. You have to take everyone with you. Removing the captaincy does not prejudice his case."

Terry pleaded not guilty to the charges, and his legal team issued a statement before the initial hearing: "Mr Terry denies making any racist statement, and will establish in court that he is not guilty of such offence. Mr Terry has never racially abused another player in his entire career."

The timing of the case means that Capello faces a dilemma when it comes to selecting his squad for the summer tournament. Matters would become even more complicated if Anton Ferdinand’s elder brother Rio is included.

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