FA condemns “disgusting behaviour” after England players receive racist abuse following Italy defeat

Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford of England wait to be substituted (Photo: Getty Images)

The Football Association says it is “appalled” after a number of England players were subjected to racist abuse on social media following the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 loss to Italy.

Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all failed from the spot on Sunday (11 July) night as England went down on penalties.

The trio’s social media pages were quickly flooded with racist comments, leading the FA to release a statement condemning the “disgusting behaviour”.

Calls for the government to act

The Football Association (FA) released a statement condemning the “disgusting behaviour”, while the Metropolitan Police condemned the “unacceptable” abuse, adding it will be investigating the “offensive and racist” social media posts.

A spokesperson for the FA said: “The FA strongly condemns all forms of discrimination and is appalled by the online racism that has been aimed at some of our England players on social media.

“We could not be clearer that anyone behind such disgusting behaviour is not welcome in following the team. We will do all we can to support the players affected while urging the toughest punishments possible for anyone responsible.

“We will continue to do everything we can to stamp discrimination out of the game, but we implore government to act quickly and bring in the appropriate legislation so this abuse has real life consequences.

“Social media companies need to step up and take accountability and action to ban abusers from their platforms, gather evidence that can lead to prosecution and support making their platforms free from this type of abhorrent abuse.”

The official Twitter account for the England men’s and women’s national teams offered support to the victimised players, saying: “We’re disgusted that some of our squad – who have given everything for the shirt this summer – have been subjected to discriminatory abuse online after tonight’s game.

'Totally unacceptable'

The Prime Minister has condemned the “appalling” racist abuse of England players on social media after their Euro 2020 final defeat. Boris Johnson said the team deserve to be hailed as “heroes” following the Three Lions’ loss to Italy and not subjected to hatred online, adding that those who sent abuse should be “ashamed of themselves”.

Boris Johnson tweeted: “This England team deserve to be lauded as heroes, not racially abused on social media. Those responsible for this appalling abuse should be ashamed of themselves.”

In a statement on Twitter, the Metropolitan Police said: “We are aware of a number of offensive and racist social media comments being directed towards footballers following the #Euro2020 final.

“This abuse is totally unacceptable, it will not be tolerated and it will be investigated.”

London Mayor Sadiq Khan called on social media companies to do more to hold to account those responsible for sending online abuse.

He wrote on Twitter: “There is absolutely no place for racism in football or anywhere else.

“Those responsible for the disgusting online abuse we have seen must be held accountable – and social media companies need to act immediately to remove and prevent this hate.”