Faurlin is interviewed for Show Racism the Red Card's new educational DVD
Show Racism the Red Card caught up with Alejandro Faurlin, DJ Campbell and Joey Barton at Queens Park Rangers's training ground. Alejandro spoke to us about growing up in Argentina and settling in to life in Britain.
Have you experienced racism within football?
Not really, no. I come from Argentina, where we really don’t have a huge mix of cultures. Maybe sometimes people get aggressive but that is normal and I think you get used to these situations. I have never experienced it badly or in an aggressive way here [in England].
Nolberto Solano once told us there was a lot of racism in Peru towards the indigenous peoples. Is there anything similar in Argentina?
Not really no, as I said before sometimes the fans get a little bit aggressive towards the players if you lose and you can think it is a bit too much. In this way Argentina has some problems within football but not in that respect.
As a footballer you mix with lots of people from different religions and cultures. Have you ever played with any Muslim players?
Yes, we have some Muslim players here [at QPR] and obviously we are in London, which has an unbelievable amount of different cultures. I really enjoy this and I have learned a lot form everyone – it is nice to be involved in that.
You say you have learnt and enjoy the mix of cultures – do you think that has made you a better person?
Yes because in Argentina you don’t have so many different cultures – almost everybody is a Christian or Catholic. I came here never having met a Muslim or people from other religions and cultures. In the beginning it was a surprise because it was so different but I really appreciate the different ways to see religion and the different ways to live every day. You have to learn and appreciate everything.
We thought the main religion was football in Argentina!
Ha yes! Definitely, it is crazy. We have to keep the balance because sometimes there is an excess of passion with football and you can sometimes feel a little bit like it is not secure for your family going to watch normal games. So sometimes parents have to tell their children to stay at home because they think it might be a little bit dangerous.
What are your views on young people who are suffering from racist abuse or bullying?
Obviously it is not right and I think it is a little bit silly. Everybody grows up with certain values and their family teaching them one way, so you have to respect everything that is different. Like I said before, you have to learn and open your mind and be happy.
I think in London this is very good, obviously there are some people who do not, but I think, in general, that London is good because it has a lot of cultures and everyone lives together. If you go to Oxford Street you can see Muslim people and many people of different colours and it is normal. You have to learn every day.
Huge thanks to Alejandro for this interview and QPR for their ongoing support of our campaign.