Sunday 18 March 2018

Ramsey has no problem with Terry

QPR boss Chris Ramsey welcomes local rivals and league-leaders Chelsea to Loftus Road on Sunday
QPR boss Chris Ramsey welcomes local rivals and league-leaders Chelsea to Loftus Road on Sunday

QPR manager Chris Ramsey expects John Terry to face a rough ride from the home fans when he leads Chelsea out at Loftus Road on Sunday - but says he would happily shake hands with the Blues skipper.

The west London derby is arguably one of the biggest in recent times with Chelsea looking to move a step closer to the Premier League title whilst their local rivals attempt to remain in the division.

And it will take on added spice as Terry returns to the ground for the first time in nearly three years having been banned and fined £220,000 by the Football Association for racially abusing then QPR defender Anton Ferdinand in 2011.

Although Terry has been back twice since the event which led to him handing over the England captaincy, he last played at Loftus Road in September 2012 and Ramsey is anticipating the Rangers supporters will be quick to make his life as uncomfortable as possible.

"Fans are fans aren't they?," Ramsey replied when asked if the game would be intensified by Terry's presence.

"That's a subject that brings up a lot of different emotions. So, it would be odd to think that there isn't going to be an extra feeling towards that situation.

"The whole episode for British society sat uncomfortably. It's not something we want to highlight in football. It happened and it's been dealt with. We have to move on and hopefully everyone has learned something from it."

Ramsey was appointed as QPR boss in February after replacing Harry Redknapp, again casting a spotlight on the lack of black managers in the English game.

Despite Terry's previous misdemeanour, Ramsey insisted he would have no qualms shaking hands with the 34-year-old, so long as there was no footballing incident in Sunday's game to prevent him from doing so.

"Ultimately John Terry is a player of Chelsea. I am a manager of QPR," he said.

"As a man, as a person, I would shake his hand. I don't know what his feelings are towards me. As long as there wasn't anything on the field that wasn't unprofessional by him, I would shake his hand."

One man who will not come up against Terry is Anton's brother Rio Ferdinand, who he has yet to face on the pitch since the charge in 2011.

"Rio has unfortunately got an injury," Ramsey said.

"He's had a knock and it's recurring, he keeps trying to train. He's someone we miss immensely. We miss his leadership qualities on the pitch. Unfortunately, he won't be involved in the game."

Other than young midfielder Michael Doughty, Ramsey has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the game as he looks to build on an impressive 4-1 win at West Brom and Tuesday's 3-3 draw with fellow strugglers Aston Villa.

Press Association

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