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Di Matteo rules out any break for Terry

ROBERTO Di Matteo insists he has no plans to give John Terry a complete break from football while he serves his four-match ban for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand.

Terry watched Chelsea beat Tottenham 4-2 from the stands on Saturday as he began the suspension that was imposed by the Football Association for his comments towards Ferdinand last October.

The 31-year-old has retained the Chelsea captaincy despite the FA's sanction and looks set to lead the Blues out in their Champions League group clash in Shakhtar Donetsk tomorrow.

Terry could be forgiven for wanting to take a break after such a tumultuous year, but when asked whether he had ever considered such an option, Di Matteo's response was blunt.

"No," said the Italian, who now hopes the club can move on from the matter. "It has been a delicate issue and we are going to continue working with the authorities to eradicate discrimination.

"The board has made the final decision (to keep Terry as captain) and we can focus on our football while keeping in mind that we have responsibilities to keep working towards a more respectful world."

One player who Di Matteo did give a recent break to was Juan Mata. The decision has proven to be wise, with the Spaniard taking his goal tally to six in five after bagging a brace against Spurs on Saturday.

Di Matteo gave Mata two weeks off after he played for Spain at Euro 2012 and the Olympics and the Italian is delighted the move has paid off.

"It was a good decision from the way he is playing. This last international break, when he wasn't selected, has given him another little breather," he said.

Mata was not selected for Spain's recent World Cup qualifier against Belarus but insists he is dedicated to the task in hand at Chelsea.

"I don't know (whether anyone was watching from Spain). I just try to improve with every Chelsea game I play," he said. "But the most important thing for me was victory. Before the game we wanted to stay top of the league and we are still there."


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