Terry is not racist – Rodgers

Terry, 31, has been ruled out of the Premier League clash with a

knee injury.

He has been charged with racially abusing QPR defender Anton

Ferdinand during October’s Premier League meeting between the

sides, a charge he strenuously denies. The first hearing in the

case is scheduled to take place at Westminster Magistrates Court on

Wednesday.

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has said the club are prepared

to give the England skipper time off in the fight to clear his

name, although he had been expected to face Swansea prior to his

withdrawal.

Swansea boss Rodgers worked with Terry during his time as

reserve and youth team manager at Stamford Bridge between 2004 and

2008, and the Northern Irishman says that, in his own experience,

the defender is not a racist.

Rodgers said: ” “He is a strong personality, John is a good man

and from my time knowing him, and what he is being talked about in

terms of the charges against him, I can safely say in my period of

time working with him that he is not a racist, if that’s what he’s

been pointed the finger as being.

“I have absolutely great confidence that is the case. He has

been a wonderful leader for Chelsea and I have known him off the

field as well and the number of players he helped evolve, dealing

with ethnic minorities young and old, it was during the time I was

there and I witnessed it, so I would say that is not the case with

John.

“He is a public figure, he is the national captain and there

have been a number of incidents that have drawn him to the

publicity.

“But from my own experience he is a great man, off the field I

had a terrific relationship with him through good and bad times, it

wasn’t always all smiles. I was able to speak my mind with him at

times and tell him how I felt and I am sure he would say the same

thing.

“I always found his communication open. He is a lover of

football and he is happiest when he is on the field or with his

family, and I have nothing but high praise for him as in that

period when I was there he was a real icon for the football club on

and off the field. I found him a terrific man.

“From my experience of knowing him quite well over that period

of time I would say he is not a racist.”

And while the centre-half will not travel to south Wales,

Rodgers believes Terry’s on-field performances will not be affected

by the situation he finds himself in, when he returns to

fitness.

“He has the skin of a rhinoceros and he has proven that many

times,” Rodgers added.

“He is one you can hang your hat on, he will be 100 per cent

committed, he is a great leader.”

Tuesday sees the close of the January transfer window, and

Rodgers got most of his deals done early as Rory Donnelly, Darnel

Situ, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Josh McEachran, who is unavailable for

this fixture under the terms of his loan from Chelsea, were all

added to his squad.

The Swans boss says he is still hopeful of adding “one or two”

new faces to his squad before the window shuts, but denied reports

linking him with moves for Matthew Bates, Adrian Mariappa and Nicky

Maynard.

He said: “We made enquiries for a number of players early in the

window and, like with many clubs, it has gone quiet, but then we

have had feedback on one to two possibilities and we will see.

“There is still a lot of work to do if they are to become

permanent signings, but we will see over the next 24 hours and take

it from there.

“We have certainly made no bids as yet but we have been given an

indication of what the price would be.”