Hypocrisy surrounding Terry saga is astounding

THERE are a lot of people out there who need a lesson in compartmentalisation. And most of them have been polluting the airwaves, blogosphere, and the newspapers over the past few days.

Do I approve of what John Terry did? No. Do I think that he is morally suspect? Yes (and have done for some time as regular readers know). Would I rather this scandal was happening at another club? Obviously.

Am I annoyed that JT’s behaviour has ensured that Chelsea make the papers (again) for something other than our football? Furious.

Do I believe that John Terry is the best choice for Chelsea and England captain – undoubtedly.

It’s the morally indignant that are queuing up to vent their spleen on his behaviour that get to me – I’m sure one would not to have to scratch very far below the surface to find worse skeletons in the cupboards of these very same people. The hypocrisy is astounding.

Where was this national outrage when Beckham dallied with Rebecca Loos, or Rooney visited an OAP prostitute and so betrayed his wife-to-be?

Or is consorting with hookers and publicity-hungry slappers OK as long as they are not the ex-squeeze of an ex-team mate?

The airways are hot with C listers who have never ever shown any interest in football, demanding that Fabio Capello “sack Terry immediately.”

And who exactly would these experts put in his place? What is morally acceptable these days? Fighting in clubs, drink driving, elbowing team mates in the head, roasting, forgetting drugs tests, “ordinary” adultery?

Good luck with all that. Is everyone so indignant because this was an Ex-team-mate’s Ex girlfriend? Even that, I believe, is not unusual in footballing circles. I have heard that the girlfriends of another London Premier League club’s players get passed around more than a share bag of Werther’s Originals but that doesn’t seem to hit the headlines.

That club isn’t Arsenal, by the way. Their players are all too young for such things, as we saw again on Sunday to take a small diversion into footballing matters.

We need to disassociate JT’s footballing pedigree from the debate about national morality and ask what is best for the England team in this World Cup year?

If, and it’s a very big If, the England dressing room has turned on Terry then perhaps his captaincy should be under review. But, really, there are not many in the England team who could with a straight face pass any sort of moral judgment on Terry.

The Chelsea team showed their support for Terry on Saturday and though much was made of the “Team Bridge” t-shirts at Manchester City not one of the players sporting them was English, and one was Stephen Ireland which tells you exactly how much intellectual weight should be attached to this silly gesture.

The “role model” argument has always been a bugbear of mine. If a parent really allows a footballer to become a role model for their child, then more fool them.

If most people put petty jealousies and club rivalries aside, they will admit Terry is not only the best centre half in the country, and probably the world, but the best man for the captaincy. Not the brightest perhaps, not the most morally astute, perhaps not the most ethical but despite still the best man for the job.

He is single-minded and totally focussed when he pulls on the shirt of his club or his country and if you needed any reminder of that fact, you just had to witness his performance at Turf Moore last Saturday, as I did.

Anyone care to remember that there is quite an important game of football this weekend? Arsenal come to the Bridge this Sunday with what could be a very significant game in the season. But I’ve run out of words so more of that next week. Come on Chelsea!

* Contact Trizia on Trizia_f@hotmail.com

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