Roberto Di Matteo believes Chelsea skipper John Terry deserves a second chance after being found guilty of "using abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour" toward QPR's Anton Ferdinand.
Terry was handed a four-game ban and fined £220,000 over the incident, which occurred at Loftus Road last October.
Di Matteo refused to comment specifically on the outcome of Terry's Football Association hearing, but asked if he believed in second chances, he said: "Yes, I do. I'm sure you've made some mistakes in your life. Me too."
Chelsea have adopted a siege mentality since the punishment was handed down on Thursday. The Blues' captain will have 14 days to appeal the decision once written confirmation is received, and in the meantime is available to face Arsenal this Saturday in what is shaping as a heated Premier League clash between the London rivals.
"We have to set good standards," Di Matteo said. "I try to set good standards. But, at the end of the day, we won't be liked by our opposition's fans. That's generally speaking for everybody. So we cannot waste too much energy worrying about what they're thinking.
"We are European champions. Whether people respect that or not, it's a fact. I know how hard we worked to get the result and how much effort we put into it. Everybody. And we've been repaid with the trophy."
Controversy has followed Terry throughout his club and international career, but when asked why unwanted headlines seemed to be associated with his captain, Di Matteo referred to another Premier League figure.
"That's a good question to ask Mario Balotelli," he said. "Why always me?"
"All I can judge is his professionalism when he's here at the club and that's spot on. He's always one of the first in. He works hard, applies himself very well, and he's been a wonderful servant for this club, professionally. He's certainly showed over the years he puts his body on the line for the club and the team."