FOOTBALL: Chelsea captain John Terry was hit with a four-match ban and fined £220,000 today after being found guilty of racially abusing QPR's Anton Ferdinand by a Football Association independent regulatory commission.
The Blues skipper denied the charge but the commission ruled that he was guilty of misconduct during Chelsea's Premier League defeat at QPR on October 23 last year.
The 31-year-old, who announced his retirement from international football last Sunday, can lodge an appeal against the panel's decision.
Terry's representatives Elite Management said in a statement: "Mr Terry is disappointed that the FA Regulatory Commission has reached a different conclusion to the clear not guilty verdict of a court of law.
"He has asked for the detailed written reasons of the decision and will consider them carefully before deciding whether to lodge an appeal."
Meanwhile an FA statement said: "An independent regulatory commission has today found a charge of misconduct against John Terry proven and has issued a suspension for a period of four matches and a fine of £220,000, pending appeal.
"The Football Association charged Mr Terry on Friday July 27 2012 with using abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour towards Queens Park Rangers' Anton Ferdinand and which included a reference to colour and/or race contrary to FA Rule E3 in relation to the Queens Park Rangers FC versus Chelsea FC fixture at Loftus Road on 23 October 2011."
The statement added that the charge came after the FA had mounted a "long-standing investigation" into the incident that had been postponed at the "request of the Crown Prosecution Service and Mr Terry's representatives pending the outcome of the criminal trial."
The former England captain was found not guilty in Westminster Magistrates Court in July of a racially-motivated public order offence, with the prosecution unable to prove he had called Ferdinand a "f****** black c***" as an insult.
Terry admitted using the words but insisted he had only been repeating words he thought Ferdinand had accused him of saying.
The Chelsea captain will be given 14 days from receipt of the written reasons for the decision in which to lodge an appeal and no ban will come into operation until the appeals procedure is complete.
Chelsea issued a statement that refused to condemn the FA's verdict.
"Chelsea Football Club notes and respects today's decision by the Football Association regarding John Terry," the statement read.