In the wake of the court decision allowing the John Terry-Wayne Bridge revelations to come out, England has erupted into a debate of what to do with John Terry.
Some argue that Terry should be stripped of his captaincy, others argue he might have to be kicked off the England team. There should be no doubt that what Terry (who’s married) did, bedding a teammate’s girlfriend, impregnating her, and then paying for her to get an abortion represents multiple violations of his teammates’ trust.
This latest news stymies Terry’s high-profile attempt to change his image from that of an idiotic playboy and lout. We should remember, this performance comes on the heels of Terry getting caught misbehaving while drunk in a hotel on September 11th, 2001 as distressed observers looked on. More recently, he was caught taking secret cash payments to take guests on tours of Chelsea’s training facility.
As dumb as England’s overly-entitled and under-educated soccer players are, even he had to know better than to sleep with a teammate’s girlfriend. But Terry didn’t. Either, because he’s just too dumb to figure it out, or because he knew that as an England player, nothing too serious would happen to him. He’s John Terry and thus, he really can’t be touched. First he tried to spend his way out of trouble, which he and his lawyers attempted to do by getting a court to issue a “super-injunction” preventing any media from revealing the affair, or even the fact there was an injunction. Now that the injunction has been lifted, Terry will likely still expect to avoid any consequences, because unless the law is directly involved, when do Premiership or England players ever face consequences? When is a Premiership player fined or suspended for violating team rules? It doesn’t happen and Terry knows it.
So, what should Fabio Capello do? If I were Capello, I’d use this as a teaching moment for England soccer’s continued culture of idiocy and strip Terry of the captaincy, boot Terry out of the England camp and suspend him from playing for his country until after the 2010 World Cup.
I should add that I don’t particularly care that he was cheating on his wife. That’s a personal matter for him and his family to deal with. The problem is that he cheated with someone that he surely knew was involved with an England teammate. That’s where this action crosses from something that isn’t really anyone’s business but Terry’s into a more Capello-relevant event.
Capello and English soccer at large should send a message that stupidity like this has consequences.
All that being said, I suspect Capello won’t do anything other than get Bridge and Terry in a room, make clear his “displeasure” and end it there. When it comes to England and the FA, it’s clear that the players and only the players call the shots in the England camp.