Ashley Cole has told the racism trial of his Chelsea and England team-mate John Terry that the case should not have been taken to court.
Terry calls on Cole
Terry, 31, is before Westminster Magistrates Court accused of calling Ferdinand a "f****** black c***" during the match at Loftus Road. He was investigated and charged after a complaint from an off-duty policeman.
Terry's representative, Keith Cousins, told the hearing on Monday that his client had been "rhetorically responding" to what he thought Ferdinand had accused him of saying. But Duncan Penny, prosecuting, responded by saying it was "unlikely" that someone's first reaction to being accused of racist abuse would be to repeat the same words.
Cole, also 31 - who played in the same defence as Terry that afternoon - told the court: "I think we shouldn't be sitting here." The left-back stressed that while racism should never be tolerated, someone repeating something they thought had been said to them was "completely different".
He said Terry was a close friend but that the case had caused him "conflict" because he is also friends with both Anton and Rio Ferdinand.
Cole told the court that Terry would shrug off taunts on the football pitch, saying: "He would probably laugh about it - it's part and parcel of the game and you get used to it," and described him as an "inspirational" captain.
He said he had believed Ferdinand's taunting of Terry during the match had been unnecessary, but that he had not heard Terry say anything in response.
Later in the match, Terry told Cole he thought Ferdinand had accused him of using a racist obscenity, and afterwards Cole was there when Terry asked Ferdinand what had happened.
He told the court: "I think John said: 'Did you think I called you a black c***, did you think I was being racist?' Then I said: 'Did you think John was being racist? Anton said: 'No, no.''' He said the two players then shook hands.
Earlier on Wednesday, Terry has told his trial that Rio Ferdinand refused to take his call in the aftermath of the allegations.
On the third day of his trail, he said he had attempted to phone Rio, an England colleague at the time, to discuss media reports of the allegations before he issued a statement. He told the court he had tried to contact him because he did not have Anton's phone number.
Penny, prosecuting, told Terry the allegations against him were "big potatoes" and said he could have spoken to his alleged victim. He said: "You might have got in touch with Mr Ferdinand and said: 'Help me out here - this is going completely nuts.'''
Terry responded by saying he had spoken to Jamie Moralee, Anton Ferdinand's representative. He added: "I did attempt to call Rio, and he wouldn't take my call - I didn't have Anton's number.''
Penny also hit out at Terry's claim, made on Tuesday, that he had issued his statement soon after the allegations because he "had nothing to hide". The lawyer said: "In the game of PR, it's very important to get your story out quickly, isn't it?"
He said Terry had "lost it" after becoming frustrated during the match before the alleged abuse took place, saying the defender had been "humiliated in public" and accusing him of using "elaborate flannel" in his defence.
"You knew you'd crossed the line, you've regretted it ever since, and you're stuck with this story," he said, to which Terry responded: "No."
Penny also suggested to Terry that he had made a remark about having sex with Anton Ferdinand's girlfriend in response to taunts from the QPR man about his alleged affair with a Chelsea team-mate's ex-partner.
He asked why Ferdinand would have made an untrue allegation of racial abuse, saying: "What good was it going to do him, making this allegation against you if it was not true?'" Terry responded: "I can't answer any questions for Anton."
He said the allegation was "the first time it's happened to me, the first time I've been accused of that on the football pitch".
Terry, who denies a racially aggravated public order offence, would face a maximum punishment of a £2,500 fine under the terms of the Crime and Disorder Act. On Tuesday, he told the court he was "very angry and upset" at being accused of racism.
The trial continues.