Belfast Telegraph

'Extreme' abuse shocks Anton Ferdinand

QPR defender Anton Ferdinand has revealed he has been shocked by the "extreme" abuse he has been subjected to since his high-profile altercation with Chelsea skipper John Terry.

Ferdinand has been thrust into the spotlight following the incident in October, which has left Terry facing a court case on July 9 on allegations he racially abused the QPR defender. Terry, who was subsequently stripped of the England captaincy, denies the charges.

"Some of the abuse has been extreme, some of it has been very extreme and I'm thinking 'how can they even be giving me any stick?'," Ferdinand told various newspapers. "But this is the world we live in. You have to deal with it and I deal with it by playing my football."

The two players are set to meet again at Stamford Bridge next weekend.

Ferdinand thanked his brother and Manchester United defender Rio, who is set to join Terry with England at this summer's Euro 2012 championship, for helping him through the difficult spell.

"Rio has been a real rock for me. He's a rock for me in everything I do, not just football, in all aspects of life," he said.

"But my whole family have been there for me, that's the way we are."

Despite the pressure the 27-year-old Ferdinand believes he has enjoyed one of his finest seasons in the Barclays Premier League.

"If you look at my career in big games I have played well, and this year it's felt like there have been a lot of big games because of the added pressure on me," he said.

"I'd like to think I've had my most consistent season since I left West Ham. That other scenario has highlighted things a bit more but at the moment I'm happy with my football. I cannot influence what other people are doing or saying. I can only affect what I'm doing on the pitch - and that's the way I've treated it."

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