Chelsea captain John Terry was charged by the FA on Friday following a verbal exchange with Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand during a Premier League match last October.
England centre back Terry, who was found not guilty of racially abusing Ferdinand in a criminal case earlier this month, has denied the charge and requested a personal hearing.
"...The FA has today charged the Chelsea player following an alleged incident that occurred during the Queens Park Rangers versus Chelsea fixture at Loftus Road on 23 October 2011," said a statement on the FA website.
"It is alleged that Terry used abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour towards Queens Park Rangers' Anton Ferdinand, contrary to FA rules.
"It is further alleged that this included a reference to the ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race of Anton Ferdinand.
"This charge is the result of The FA's long-standing enquiries into this matter, which were placed on hold pending the outcome of the criminal trial, and relates to rules governing football only," the statement added.
In evidence given during the court case, Terry admitted using highly offensive words but maintained he was sarcastically repeating what Ferdinand mistakenly thought he had said.
Explaining his verdict at the end of the five-day hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court, chief magistrate Howard Riddle said there was no doubt about the offensive words Terry used towards Ferdinand but it was impossible to be sure exactly what were the words spoken by the Chelsea player at the relevant time.
Terry was stripped of the England captaincy by the FA in February because of the allegations. That decision triggered the resignation of England's Italian manager Fabio Capello.
Capello's successor Roy Hodgson included Terry in the squad that played in Euro 2012 last month and he remains available to play for England pending the outcome of the case.