John Terry’s FA racism hearing will start on 24th September. The Chelsea defender has been charged for using ‘abusive and/or insulting words’ with reference to ‘ethnic origin/colour/race’ relating to the incident last year and the trial will follow this Saturday’s match against QPR. The delay in setting a date has been due to the intricacies of appointing an independent regulatory commission for a sensitive case but the hearing has now been scheduled at an unknown location and should last two or three days.
TalkSport are reporting that Juventus are interested in Fernando Torres as they continue their search for a marquee striker signing. Juventus had to settle for a season-long loan for Arsenal’s Nicklas Bendtner after failing in moves for Robin Van Persie, Luis Suarez and Eden Dzeko this past summer but believe they can convince Chelsea to part ways with Torres next year at a fraction of the £50m fee for which they acquired him. The interest in Torres will not however impede their pursuit of Athletic Bilbao’s Fernando Llorente whose contract will expire next summer.
Amidst reports this morning that Arsenal will attempt to sign Didier Drogba from Shanghai Shenhua, former Chelsea player and coach Ray Wilkins believes the Ivorian’s affinities with Chelsea will render any potential move difficult. Drogba spent eight years at Chelsea and has previously declared that he will not play for another Premier League club.
Andre Marriner will referee Chelsea’s match with QPR on Saturday in what is expected to be a highly charged affair. Marriner does have experience however of officiating fiery matches having taken charge of Liverpool’s game against United when the incident between Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra occurred.
Frank Lampard scored England’s equaliser against Ukraine from the penalty spot yesterday against Ukraine and was promptly awarded the man of the match award but only after it had first been awarded to captain Steven Gerrard. Gerrard was initially named man of the match but his sending off forced the stadium announcer to instead award it to goal scorer Lampard.
Assistant coach Steve Holland has revealed that the international break is a chance for fringe players and youth players, who remain at the club, to catch the eye of management. International duty for the majority of the first-team means there may only be four or five during training sessions but Holland claims the scarce numbers provide younger players with the opportunity to impress Roberto Di Matteo as they make up the numbers in training matches.
image: © Ben Sutherland