It was one of the most unsavoury episodes seen on a football pitch, and though John Terry has still never been convicted of using racist language, Anton Ferdinand’s accusation remains.
An explosive west London derby between Queen’s Park Rangers and Chelsea back in 2011 captured the attention of headline writers everywhere with Terry alleged to have used a racist term to belittle Ferdinand.
The sour taste lingered for years, not least because Terry’s defensive partner in the England side was Anton’s brother, Rio.
News that the former Chelsea captain might now be looking to move into management has led Ferdinand to question whether he would be branded a hypocrite if one of his players is racially abused in the heat of the moment.
“I can only do what I can do and keep doing what I’m doing. Do I think it’s stupid? Absolutely,” Ferdinand said to Ladbrokes, cited by the Daily Star.
“Especially when you look at the route he [Terry] wants to go down now in management. I felt like a hypocrite for so many years because I never dealt with my incident.
“Believe me, whenever there was something racial or to do with discrimination in football for all those years, my phone number was the first one people would call.
“All the news outlets would want five minutes with me but I never did it, because I’d have felt like a hypocrite.
“I just kept thinking that people would say ‘how’s he going to talk about someone else’s incident without addressing his own?’
“And that’s going to be the issue that John Terry will have as and when he becomes a manager.
“The fact that I’ve asked him to be on my documentary and he hasn’t tried yet to come together and make a positive change; if the time comes when he is a manager and one of his players racially abuses somebody or gets racially abused, what is he going to do?
“What is he going to say? People will say ‘hang on a minute, Anton Ferdinand asked you to be in his documentary but you didn’t want to, and now you’re flying high and mighty on something to do with racism. How does that work?'”
Given Terry’s standing within the game, and his ability to brush off any controversy, Ferdinand’s latest comments are unlikely to ruffle his feathers.
It will be interesting to see any post-match interviews with Terry if Ferdinand’s thoughts prove to be prophetic.