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Page last updated at 18:00 GMT, Wednesday, 26 August 2009 19:00 UK

Millwall and Hammers slam racism

The FA's Adrian Bevington

Report - FA to probe violence at Upton Park

Millwall and West Ham have condemned the racial abuse from fans during Tuesday night's tempestuous Carling Cup tie at Upton Park.

Visiting fans were heard aiming monkey chants at West Ham striker Carlton Cole while Millwall's Jason Price was also targeted, according to reports.

"Millwall FC condemns racist abuse by supporters of both sides on Tuesday night," read a club statement.

"There is absolutely no place for racism in society."

It added: "Both Millwall and West Ham work tirelessly in our respective communities to tackle this problem."

A West Ham spokesman stated: "We take any sort of racist chanting seriously. If found guilty, we will treat that with the utmost severity."

The racist chanting further soured a night of shocking violence involving the supporters of the London rivals.

I might be as strong as a gorilla but I'm not a monkey
Carlton Cole

The Football Association has launched an investigation after one man was stabbed as fans clashed outside the ground, and there were three pitch invasions during the second-round tie.

Cole, who appeared to gesture back at Millwall fans when he was substituted towards the end of West Ham's 3-1 win, has shrugged off the abuse.

"I heard it but it's football," said the 25-year-old England striker. "I don't care. I know I'm not a monkey. I might be as strong as a gorilla but I'm not a monkey.

"It's about mental toughness. You just have to carry on with your game and usually you come out good."

Cole admitted he was shocked by violent scenes reminiscent of the 1980s, when English football was dogged by hooliganism.

"I've never been involved in such a turbulent game like that," he added. "Passions were running high and it was a unique experience."



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see also
FA to probe Upton Park violence
26 Aug 09 |  West Ham
Violence a 'disgrace to football'
26 Aug 09 |  London
Unrest at Upton Park
26 Aug 09 |  UK
Mass violence mars London derby
25 Aug 09 |  London
West Ham 3-1 Millwall (aet)
25 Aug 09 |  League Cup


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