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Jul
2015
Wednesday 29th
posted by Morning Star in Sport

Striker Eni Aluko hit the nail on the her in tweet on the decision, says KADEEM SIMMONDS


WELL done to Eni Aluko for saying what we all thought last week. After the baffling decision by the Football Association not to punish Iain Moody and Malky Mackay for their racist, homophobic and sexist text messages, the England international took to Twitter to air her grievances.

The striker tweeted: “Basically if you’re a football coach/manager/leader and racist in private it’s ok... Dreadful precedent.”

She was correct, but not many people had the courage to say what they really felt. If their private text conversation discussed match-fixing do you think they would have got away with it?Not in the slightest. But say a few racist things, well the FA seemingly doesn’t care.

It’s not like what was said was gossip. Both parties involved admitted to what was said and apologised. Yet it took the old dinosaurs upstairs 11 months to rule not guilty.

Did they not understand what was said? On the arrival of a South Korean player, a text was sent which read: “Fkn chinkys. Fk it. There’s enough dogs in Cardiff for us all to go around.”

On other signings, another message said: “Not many white faces among that lot but worth considering.”

Mackay and Moody have been caught red-handed, with the smoking gun over the dead body. The pair have then pleaded guilty and yet have not been punished.

I thought the FA had turned the corner when they punished former Wigan chairman Dave Whelan, who defended appointing Mackay while he was under investigation, but this is 100 steps back.

How can anyone take them seriously the next time a player says a racist comment on the pitch? Yes the circumstances may be different as it isn’t a private conversation. But the meaning remains the same. Racism is racism whether it is caught on camera for millions of viewers to see or whether it is said in a conversation via Whatsapp or Skype.

That it wasn’t said in a football ground should make no difference. In their capacity, they have done wrong. They know it, supporters know and the FA know it. That they have escaped being disciplined says a lot about the priorities of those in charge of the FA.

The same has to be said about Russian football. Following the news of Emmanuel Frimpong’s dismissal for giving racist fans the middle finger — and rightly so — imagine my shock when I read FC Ufa’s general director Shamil Gazizov’s comments.

“There were people who could have shouted things. These are emotions which go away after the game. We are partners with the red and whites and are on good terms,” he said.

“What Frimpong did was wrong. Sometimes you even have to hold back the tears and just put up with it.”

Put up with it? Not at all. Frimpong had every right do what he did and frankly didn’t do enough in my eyes.

Supporters cannot be allowed to get away with this. Spartak Moscow should be fined heavily, made to play games behind closed doors and banned from European competitions for a short period of time to send a clear message to other teams in that league.

But Russia continue to act innocent and oblivious to a problem that is staring at them an inch away from their nose. And the fact that Fifa are also ignoring the situation and sticking to their guns over the next World Cup being staged there is spitting in the face of every black player.

How can you stage a global tournament knowing that a large section of the crowd are likely to make monkey chants at those involved?Frimpong alluded to this on social media. “We’re going to hold a World Cup in this country where Africans will have to come play football,” he wrote after he was abused.

Fifa have a lot going on at the moment but if they have any hope of repairing their image, start with stripping the World Cup from them. It will send out a huge message to all the nations and their respective governing bodies.

Racism will not be tolerated at the top level and it may force a few countries, England included, to clean up their acts.

Because, let’s be honest, England have a problem from the top of the footballing pyramid to the bottom.

The incidents involving Whelan, Mackay, Moody and in previous years with John Terry and Ron Atkinson prove that it hasn’t been eradicated.

We can point the finger at Russia and Spain but like I have said before on these pages, England are in no position to call out other countries when they are yet to sort out their own problem.

In 2015 racism is still rife in football. It will continue to be so until those with the power to do so accept the situation and make a real effort to eradicate it from the game.




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