Former English Football Association chairman David Triesman has spoken out strongly regarding the racist abuse charges leveled at defender John Terry.
"I take a fairly hard view and I think we should have zero tolerance," said Triesman, who implied that Terry might not have played for England while under investigation if Triesman had still been FA chairman when the body stripped Terry of the captaincy last February.
"Personally, I would have preferred that, yes," said Triesman. "However good he is – and I have no doubt about the quality of the player – I really think as you look around the country and talk to black players, what you will find is they respect him as a player but they really feel let down because they don't feel the line has been drawn clearly enough."
Triesman also criticized the 11-month interval between the incident during an October league match against Queens Park Rangers and the handing out of a four-match suspension last week. Terry was cleared of charges that he racially abused QPR defender Anton Ferdinand by an English court in July yet the FA proceeded with its own line of inquiry.
"I can't for the life of me see why the FA couldn't have proceeded before the court case," he said. "Sports bodies do have the capacity to act earlier [than the courts], to demonstrate their leadership, and they should have done so."