LONDON – Chelsea defender John Terry brought his long and often controversial England career to an end yesterday when he announced his retirement from international soccer.
The 31-year-old, capped 78 times since his debut in 2003 and who appeared at two World Cups, issued a statement saying his position in the national team had become untenable due to the Football Association’s impending case against him.
Terry was due before an FA tribunal today facing charges of racially abusing Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand during a Premier League game last October despite being acquitted in the law courts in July.
Terry, who if found guilty of racially abusing Ferdinand could face a lengthy ban similar to the one served by Liverpool’s Luis Suarez last season, said the FA had left him in an impossible position.
“I am making this statement today in advance of the hearing of the FA disciplinary charge because I feel The FA, in pursuing charges against me where I have already been cleared in a court of law, have made my position with the national team untenable,” he said.
Terry has spent his entire career with Chelsea since joining as a 14-year-old.
SINGAPORE – Sebastian Vettel displayed all the guts and determination of a world champion to haul himself back into the Formula One title race with a Singapore victory that sets up a mouth-watering finale to the season.
Vettel kept his focus to win a “killer” race that ran for a full two hours on a balmy Sunday night, enabling the German to cut championship leader Fernando Alonso’s advantage to 29 points with six rounds remaining as he seeks a hat-trick of crowns.
Vettel cut a forlorn figure after an erratic race in Monza two weeks ago ended prematurely with an alternator failure, leaving many observers to doubt whether the German had the desire or the vehicle to mount a serious title challenge. His demeanor had changed by yesterday after a polished drive backed up his domination in practice as both he and Alonso benefited from another failure for Lewis Hamilton, who has offset three wins with three retirements in the last eight races.
All season long, McLaren’s rivals have claimed the British car was the most competitive yet Hamilton’s challenge took a body blow yesterday when he surrendered the lead on the 23rd lap with a gearbox failure and is now 52 points behind Alonso.