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Insta bans user for racially abusing Toney

AN INDIVIDUAL who racially abused Brentford striker Ivan Toney (pictured) on Instagram has been banned from the platform, the club said today.

Brentford said they made a complaint to the social-media company as soon as they became aware of the post, as well as reporting the abuse to the police.

The club said: “Player welfare staff made contact with Ivan Toney last night [Monday]. We will work with him and give him any support he needs.

“Any steps that Ivan wants to take against the perpetrator will have our full support and we will work with Instagram and the police to try and identify the individual involved, taking action against them if possible. We were pleased to see the firm response from Kick It Out to the abuse,” the club said.

“The club has a close relationship with Kick It Out, the FA and other organisations that, like us, believe in increasing the diversity and inclusivity of football.

“We will do all we can to work with them to rid football of hateful and discriminatory behaviour.

“It is often difficult to identify the perpetrators, but we hope that with the assistance of social-media platforms this will change over time.”

Brentford banned two season-ticket holders for breaches of their social-media policy on Christmas Eve.

The club’s policy is not to name such individuals, but a joint PA news agency and the Times investigation found one of them was James Stacey, whose firm JS Electricals is based in Shepperton in Surrey.

Another individual, Steven Green, was banned for using highly offensive racist language in a video posted on social media in September.

Mr Green is in a relationship with a club employee and had been employed by the club last summer on their Farewell to Griffin Park tours despite a previous banning order and conviction for affray.

Mr Green pleaded guilty to a charge of racially aggravated harassment on January 4 at Wimbledon magistrates’ court.

A tweet from one account said it hoped terrorist group Isis would blow up the new Brentford stadium, with club non-executive director Monique Choudhuri inside. Another tweet from the same account featured a racist term and regularly features posts referencing Nazism and Adolf Hitler.

Another account has been suspended by Twitter but had been posting racist and Islamophobic material.

Other photographs on social media show stickers depicting holocaust victim Anne Frank mocked up in a Fulham shirt, which it is believed were intended for distribution before the west London rivals’ scheduled meeting last March prior to the first coronavirus lockdown.

Football authorities are stepping up their efforts to combat online hate. A working group has been set up to better tackle the issue.

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