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Racism in Football


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#1 John Simkin

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Posted 18 November 2004 - 06:13 PM

Like many people I was shocked by the racial abuse experienced by black footballers playing in Madrid last night. This is something that does not happen in Britain now. It did happen in the past. I remember Clyde Best of West Ham suffering at the hands of opposing supporters in the early 1970s. Today, every team has black stars. This has stopped this moronic behaviour. Spain obviously does not have many black stars playing for their teams. The events of last night raises two issues:

1. Should the England team have linked arms in solidarity with their abused colleagues and marched off the field in protest?

2. Should Spain be punished for this behaviour? Should they be allowed to hold international sporting events in the future? I am thinking about their bid to hold the Olympic Games. Can they be trusted to treat the black athletes with respect at these games?

#2 Andy Walker

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Posted 18 November 2004 - 06:48 PM

Like many people I was shocked by the racial abuse experienced by black footballers playing in Madrid last night. This is something that does not happen in Britain now. It did happen in the past. I remember Clyde Best of West Ham suffering at the hands of opposing supporters in the early 1970s. Today, every team has black stars. This has stopped this moronic behaviour. Spain obviously does not have many black stars playing for their teams. The events of last night raises two issues:

1. Should the England team have linked arms in solidarity with their abused colleagues and marched off the field in protest?

2. Should Spain be punished for this behaviour? Should they be allowed to hold international sporting events in the future? I am thinking about their bid to hold the Olympic Games. Can they be trusted to treat the black athletes with respect at these games?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I was similarly disgusted by the loud racist and loutish monkey chants directed at the Black players last night. Moreover it was clearly not just a minority of the crowd.

Funnily enough my other half Alison (who is a PE teacher) was watching the game with me and she suggested that the England Captain should have taken his team off the pitch as soon as it started. I think this, followed by a press conference explaining the action, would have far greater impact than fining the Spanish FA or banning Spain from holding future tournaments.

Is the fact that the Spanish National Coach is an alleged racist himself an important factor in the emergence of the moronic element in the crowd?

I've always found Spain a relaxed and tolerant place - what's going wrong?

#3 Graham Davies

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Posted 18 November 2004 - 07:14 PM

I found the monkey chants disgusting. We used to hear them in this country - but this does not happen so often now. The England team should have walked off.

#4 Chris McKie

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Posted 18 November 2004 - 08:20 PM

Like many people I was shocked by the racial abuse experienced by black footballers playing in Madrid last night. This is something that does not happen in Britain now.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


After a similar incident at the U21 match the previous night, I can't say the racist chanting came as a complete surprise. Incidents like this have sadly been commonplace in some countries in eastern Europe during recent matches involving England and Arsenal. I seem to recall Ashely Cole and Emile Heskey being on the receiving end of some abuse when England played Slovakia recently. As an interesting aside, Ashley Cole was recently asked what his favourite country was. His reply was: "I'd have to say Spain. That was one of the first holidays that I could afford. Plus it is always really hot every time I've been. I've been with my family and my mum and my brother - we've always gone back to the same place." I wonder if he now regards Spain in such a good light. I for one could not blame him if he does not given the sickening chants from sections of the Spanish support last night.

Fining offending countries has been tried in the past, but it does not seem to be having much impact at a European level. Perhaps the England team should have marched off in protest. That would certainly have aroused some media opinion.




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