Football Fights Back – #SayNotoRacism
Football. The Beautiful game. The most popular sport in the world is played by hundreds of millions of Men, Women and Children. Over a billion people tuned in to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. So we’re talking a pretty large global tribe. And sadly, on every continent, there are examples of Racism in Football. In fact Racism is one of Footballs biggest challenges. Here’s a few examples from a long list of hundreds of documented cases:
ITALY: On 11 May 2014, bananas were thrown at Milan’s Kevin Constant and Nigel de Jong, both black, by Atalanta fans. Atalanta were later fined €40,000.
JAPAN: In March 2014, J1 League club Urawa Red Diamonds had to play to an empty stadium; their fans had been banned following racist banners displayed in previous matches.
ENGLAND: In February 2015, Chelsea fans were involved in an incident in which they pushed a black passenger off a Metro in Paris before a Champions League match against Paris Saint-Germain. The supporters were heard chanting:
Thankfully, some of the authorities are taking real and decisive action most notably UEFA where the campaign to eliminate racism, discrimination and intolerance from football has become a major priority for the organisation in recent years – and the European body makes full use of its high-profile platforms to send out a key and unequivocal message: No to Racism.
Since 2001, UEFA has forged a close partnership with the FARE network, which comprises groups and bodies working against intolerance and discrimination across the continent. UEFA has given considerable financial support to the FARE organisation, and both bodies have cooperated in staging events, issuing publications, and pressing home a message of zero tolerance for any form of racism and discrimination, in favour of more respect for diversity.
Many of the stars themselves are role models in the Racism fight and lending their names to the cause.
“A lot of different races and nationalities play football, so it is a good way to try and stop racism” – Thierry Henry