News24

Terry puts family issues aside

2009-03-27 16:14

London - England captain John Terry has insisted he is solely thinking about football ahead of Saturday's friendly international against Slovakia after newspaper reports his mother and mother-in-law had been cautioned for shoplifting.

The Chelsea defender told reporters here on Friday: "I've got experience of seeing many headlines and as a player you get on with it and fully concentrate on football, like I did in training this morning - it doesn't affect players."

David Beckham will set a new record of 109 caps for an England outfield player if he comes on against Slovakia, breaking the record of 1966 World Cup winning captain Bobby Moore.

"He fully deserves the accolades and the caps he's getting," said Terry of the AC Milan midfielder, who made his name at Manchester United.

"He's made 99 starts, possibly 100 tomorrow, and should win his 109th cap. What an achievement and example to young players," added Terry, who left open the possibility that Beckham could captain the team at some stage on Saturday.

"To see the stat that he's had 99 starts for his country is unbelievable."

England, who face Ukraine in a 2010 World Cup qualifier on Wednesday, are unbeaten so far in their quest to reach the 2010 finals in South Africa.

Terry said the hurt of England's failure to reach the 2008 European championships in Austria and Switzerland remained a powerful source of motivation. "After the disappointment, no-one was hit harder than me," he recalled.

"But we are more determined than ever to do well. We have had a great start and are just looking to keep winning and winning. Other teams are fearing us again, and we are hoping we can use that to our advantage."

And on England's defeat by European champions Spain in a friendly international in February he said: "Spain are one of the best teams in the world at the moment. They played some great football, and at times it was difficult to get close and press them," he explained.

"But you will learn, and we have learned from that."

Terry too is in sight of a milestone, in his case a 50th England cap.

"When you get to 20 caps you think about 50. Hopefully I'm going to get 50 against Slovakia, then 80 and 100," he said.

AFP