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Terry decides against appeal

Chelsea captain John Terry has said that he will not appeal against the sanctions imposed by the Football Association after he was found guilty of racially abusing Anton Ferdinand.

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Terry, 31, was given a four-match ban and a £220,000 fine after an FA panel found him to have insulted the Queens Park Rangers defender during a game at Loftus Road last October.

The former England defender had until 1800 BST on Thursday to confirm whether he would appeal against the FA verdict.

Terry had been found not guilty of the charge at Westminster magistrates court in July.

The prosecution in his London court case had been unable to prove beyond reasonable doubt that he had called Ferdinand a "f****** black c***'' as an insult. Terry claimed to have been repeating words he thought Ferdinand had accused him of saying.

However, an independent FA panel, which needed only to establish guilt on the balance of probabilities, found the player's argument to be "improbable, implausible and contrived".

Terry maintains he did not use the words as an insult but acknowledged that his language was not appropriate and has now decided to accept his punishment without an appeal.

In a statement released by his management agency, he said: "After careful consideration, I have decided not to appeal against the FA judgement.

"I want to take this opportunity to apologise to everyone for the language I used in the game against Queens Park Rangers last October.

"Although I'm disappointed with the FA judgement, I accept that the language I used, regardless of the context, is not acceptable on the football field or indeed in any walk of life.

"As I stated in the criminal case, with the benefit of hindsight my language was clearly not an appropriate reaction to the situation for someone in my position.

"My response was below the level expected by Chelsea Football Club, and by me, and it will not happen again."

Terry said he would "continue to play my part in assisting the club to remove all types of discriminatory behaviour from football", adding that he was "extremely grateful for the consistent support of Chelsea FC, the fans and my family".

In a statement, Chelsea said they believed Terry had made the right decision and added: "Chelsea also appreciates, and supports, John's full apology for the language he used.

"The club firmly believes such language is not acceptable and fell below the standards expected of John as a Chelsea player.

"The board has conducted its own investigation into the matter and considered the various issues involved. The board has taken further disciplinary action in addition to the four-match suspension and £220,000 fine imposed by the FA.

"In accordance with our long-standing policy, that disciplinary action will remain confidential."

Terry will begin his suspension in Saturday's game against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.