The FA will today vote on the minimum sentences handed out to footballers who are found guilty of racially abusing an opponent and indications are they will not follow UEFA’s recent strong stance.
“We welcome a clarification over the appropriate sanctions for a racist incident on the football pitch and hope that this will remove some of the ambiguity surrounding the issue.”
Ged Grebby, Chief Executive, Show Racism the Red Card
The organisation will meet today at Wembley, with members being asked to vote for what they feel are appropriate sanctions that will provide a clear and unequivocal punishment for any player found guilty of racial abuse of another player.
Show Racism the Red Card has recently welcomed UEFA’s proposal of a ten game ban for individuals and although FA chairman David Bernstein has stated that the organisation are not under pressure to mirror the sanctions suggested by Europe’s governing body, we are also pleased to see that the FA have not ruled out matching or even exceeding the punishments proposed by UEFA.
Mr Bernstein said ‘We don't have to follow UEFA. Ours is a very detailed and thought-out proposal. It is not likely to be exactly in line with UEFA's. Ours will have a minimum but it will have a clear acceleration from that minimum. We may well yet go beyond the 10."
Clarification of the reporting and sanctions resulting from racist abuse should remove the disparity seen last season with the high profile incidents involving Liverpool’s Luis Suarez, who was banned for eight matches for racially abusing Manchester United’s Patrice Evra, and Chelsea’s John Terry who received a four match ban for using racist language in a incident with QPR defender Anton Ferdinand.
Speaking about today’s vote, Show Racism the Red Card’s Chief Executive, Ged Grebby, had this to say “We welcome a clarification over the appropriate sanctions for a racist incident on the football pitch and hope that this will remove some of the ambiguity surrounding the issue.”
“However, as an organisation that uses the positive influence of professional footballers and other sportsmen and women as role models for young people, we believe strongly in the role of education in tacking racism both within sport and society and a commitment to working within the community to tackle issues alongside a clearly defined structure of bans and fines would be most welcome.”
Fifa will also be voting on its own set of proposals later this month which will also include sanctions for clubs and supporters in an attempt to clamp down on incidents which have blighted the reputation of football across Europe this season.
UEFA proposes 10 match ban clubs found guilty of racism