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Date: 21 November 2017

  World - Soccer


News Headlines

Racism in Euro soccer on the rise?

[Posted 27 Oct 2011]
[By Brighton Mupangavanhu]
Racism in Euro soccer on the rise?

The allegations that Chelsea captain John Terry racially abused QPR defender Anton Ferdinand in a recent Barclays English Premiership match have increased concerns about the possible flaring up of racist abuse of black professional soccer players in Europe.

In a tension-filled match in which Chelsea lost 0-1 to QPR, and had two players sent off, Terry and Ferdinand were involved in some verbal confrontation in which footages show Terry to have been the aggressor.

Video footages circulated on the internet carried comments from fans which appeared to suggest that Terry had racially abused the QPR defender.

Interestingly it is not clear what Terry is alleged to have said to Ferdinand during the incident, and even more interesting is the fact that Ferdinand himself has not complained about anything.

Terry denies the allegations and has claimed that he and Ferdinand had a clear-the-air-talk after the match and says that it was all a misunderstanding and that people have leapt to wrong conclusions emanating from an inconclusive video footage.

"I would never say such a thing - and I'm saddened that people would think so," Terry added.

The English Football Association has instituted an inquiry into the allegations that Terry racially abused Ferdinand. At the same time, the Metropolitan police has received a public complaint regarding the incident and is also carrying out an inquiry.

This is not the first incident of racial abuse towards black players involving English football in the recent months.

The FA is investigating another complaint by Manchester United's French defender Patrice Evra that Liverpool striker Luiz Suarez used a racial slur during a match on October 15. As expected Suarez has denied the allegations.

In September, Ashley Young, an England international, was apparently subjected to a racial taunt by Bulgarian soccer fans during England's visit to the European country, in a match the Bulgarians lost 0-3 at home. UEFA has charged the Bulgarian Football Federation for the incident.

There are concerns in England that if racism is not rooted out of topflight soccer, it could influence lower leagues and may become difficult to contain.

Lord Herman Ouseley, chairman of football's equality and inclusion campaign Kick It Out has spoken strongly against racism in English football.

"This is worrying and potentially very damaging," said Lord Ouseley.

"What happens at the top end of the game has an impact at grassroots level and at parks pitches across the country."

At least the FA and UEFA appear to be taking corrective measures against alleged perpertrators. It will certainly be damaging particularly for Terry's football career, if the allegations are to be proved true.

Not only is Terry captain of a big club in the Barclays English Premiership league. He is captain of the English national soccer team. At his club Chelsea, he is team mate and a leader to many black players such as Didier Drogba, Salomon Kalou, Jose Bosingwa, Michael Essien, Ashley Cole, John Obi Mikel, to name just a few.

Terry will find it difficult to face his fellow players, especially the black players, if he is to be convicted of the damaging allegations.

For his sack, and for the sack of the beautiful game, most football lovers will hope that the allegations against John Terry are found not to be true. 

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