Hughes expects Ferdinand boycott to continue

QPR boss Mark Hughes expects defender Anton Ferdinand to continue his boycott of the Kick it Out t-shirt ahead of his side's game at Arsenal on Saturday.

Football News: Anton Ferdinand of Queens Park Rang

Ferdinand found himself at the centre of a racism storm a year ago, a situation that was only concluded recently when John Terry was found guilty of racially abusing the QPR defender by the Football Association.

The former England skipper subsequently decided not to challenge the fine and ban he was awarded by the FA.

The 27-year-old Ferdinand was one of a number of players to opt against wearing a Kick it Out T-shirt ahead of Premier League games last weekend as they feel the anti-racism organisation is not doing enough to tackle the problem.

Anton and brother Rio released a statement on Wednesday drawing a line under the row, but Hughes is not convinced Ferdinand will don the T-shirt this weekend.

He said: "I've not discussed it with him this week. Obviously he didn't last weekend and nothing's changed to any great extent. Statements have been made.

"I'm not sure if Anton or any of the other guys who felt that they didn't want to wear the T-shirt.

"The majority of the squad will. He made his feelings known in that regard, and there hasn't been that much more water under the bridge since he made the decision not to wear it against Everton, so probably he won't wear it again. I don't know. I have no idea. Maybe with the statement he's brought out he'll feel he'll want to support it.

"I think Anton and his brother just made it clear that the PFA and FA and the Kick it Out campaign have done great work in the past and will do great work in the future. I think the point was made that we're at a point in time now when people feel they need to discuss things possibly in greater detail and air their grievances."

Hughes reiterated his stance that he will not make any of his players wear the T-shirt if they wish to abstain from supporting the campaign but did concede that if Ferdinand were to do so it could further put the whole debate to bed.

"Well possibly, people would interpret it that way," he said.

"I'm not going to force people to do things they don't want to do, that would be incorrect so people have to make their own decision and their own personal judgement on whether they want to or feel able to wear a t-shirt to support the campaign.

"It's his own personal decision. I've said that before. People have to make a judgement on what they feel is correct and what they can support. At the moment Anton and a number of players feel they don't want to show their support by wearing a T-shirt."

Hughes also backed the PFA's six-point plan which aims to tackle racism within the game including the possibility of sacking a player or coach found guilty of racial abuse.

He said: "Well there were a number of points, some had merits and others maybe need more discussion but the key point to it is that people are now discussing issues that a number people think should have been addressed in more detail and at greater length then more things would have been solved before we got to this point.

"It is a good thing that the PFA have understood that and want to be seen to be moving the process forward and that is obviously what this proposal looks like doing.

"Whether all of these proposals will be adopted or more will be added we will have to wait and see but certainly it is on the table to be discussed."



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