Ferdinand to snub Terry and Cole, brothers feel 'betrayed'
Pre-match handshake could be a flashpoint if all three play in QPR v Chelsea game
THE thorny issue of handshakes is back on the Premier League agenda ahead of what could be a poisonous London derby between QPR and Chelsea on Saturday. The clash could see John Terry and Anton Ferdinand come face to face for the first time since their court case this summer, when the Chelsea captain was cleared of racially abusing the Hoops defender.
Just to add to the tension, Ashley Cole, Terry's Chelsea team mate, his chief defence witness and a former friend of Ferdinand, is also likely to be playing.
Ferdinand will decline to shake hands with either Chelsea player, and QPR are considering trying to do away with the pre-match ritual just as they did before meetings between the sides last season.
But The Daily Telegraph reports: "The Premier League is adamant that the traditional pre-match handshake should go ahead regardless of any tension between individuals."
It adds that QPR are locked in talks with their player over the situation: "Ferdinand will meet with advisers and club staff today before making a final decision about Saturday but, as of last night, was minded not to shake the hand of either Chelsea player."
All three players are recovering from injuries, but if they are passed fit there is likely to be a tense stand-off before the game.
Even if they do not meet on Saturday the affair is far from over. Terry still faces an FA charge over the incident with Ferdinand in October last year, and the fall-out could also affect the match between Chelsea and Manchester United next month.
Rio Ferdinand, Anton's brother, is also expected to snub Cole after he branded him a 'choc-ice', someone who is black on the outside and white on the inside, on Twitter after Terry was cleared. Rio's Tweet led to an FA charge and a £45,000 fine.
"The Ferdinands believe they were betrayed by Cole when he agreed to speak as a defence witness for John Terry in his successful court battle against the charge that he racially abused Anton last season," explains the Daily Mail.