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02 October 2023

Chelsea and QPR appeal for Cup calm


Chelsea and QPR on Wednesday warned supporters that "abuse and discrimination has no place in football or society" as the Premier League sides prepare for Saturday's FA Cup meeting.

The game brings together Chelsea captain John Terry and QPR defender Anton Ferdinand, who were embroiled in a racism row after the Blues' 1-0 defeat to their London rivals in October.

Terry has been charged with racially abusing Ferdinand during the game - which he denies - and will appear in court on February 1.

There has been speculation around whether the pair will shake hands before Saturday's game.

However, the two clubs have presented a united front in asking for the game to be a "celebration of football".

Bruce Buck, chairman of Chelsea, and Tony Fernandes, his QPR counterpart, said in the statement: "We have discussed the issues surrounding this weekend's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Loftus Road and we are both in total agreement that abuse and discrimination has no place in football or society.

"Both clubs enjoy fantastic support. However, we would remind fans that while we want to hear their passion, it's a fact that hatred and abuse is not what being a fan of Chelsea or QPR is about.

"The clubs will work together with the police to ensure that anyone using discriminatory or inflammatory language is identified and that the strongest possible action is taken against them."

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas also appealed Monday for calm ahead of the game, insisting his club had a responsibility "to calm the situation around the game."