BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Football: Europe  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Teams
Statistics
FA Cup
Eng Prem
Internationals
Champions League
Uefa Cup
Eng Div 1
Eng Div 2
Eng Div 3
Eng Conf
Scot Prem
Scottish Cup
Scot Div 1
Scot Div 2
Scot Div 3
Europe
Africa
League of Wales
Cricket
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

  Monday, 28 October, 2002, 10:39 GMT
Football faces up to new battle
Fans light flares at a football match
Racism remains among some European fans

Racism is rife in parts of European football, a BBC Sport Online investigation has revealed.

We sent reporters to big games across Europe to provide a snapshot of the situation as it stands at the end of 2002.

And from Britain to Poland, France to Yugoslavia, the conclusion was the same: football needs to do more if it is to rid itself of racism.

Our investigation revealed:

  • racist abuse of black players in Italy
  • widespread anti-Semitism in Poland
  • flagrant racism in Yugoslavia where police ignore the problem

Although the problem appears largely confined to Eastern Europe, where racism remains a deep-rooted malaise ignored by the authorities, it is still a significant issue in Italy.

In Rome, Lazio's hardcore right-wing fans ritually greet black players with monkey chants and racist abuse.

However, there were encouraging signs that racism is being successfully tackled in some parts of Europe.

Matches in Paris, Berlin, Rotterdam and London at grounds which have previously witnessed racist incidents, were conducted free of bigotry, according to our eye witnesses.

But BBC Sport Online also found that, Europe-wide, football does not reflect the racial diversity of the society of which it is part.

Piara Power, of anti-racism pressure group Kick It Out, said: "We've made quite a lot of progress in Britain - but there's a lot more still to be done.

"There are issues of exclusion that need to be dealt with - for example, there are only one or two Asian professional footballers in this country.

United stand

"We don't have enough former black players going into management and coaching.

"We don't have enough local people of ethnic descent employed by football clubs in other roles, such as administration.

"Black players in eastern Europe still have monkey chants made at them.

"These are the new issues, and they are harder to understand and harder to campaign around - but they need to be solved."

Kick It Out have been running an anti-racism campaign across the continent for the last fortnight.

"We need to get the message across to everyone in the game that we can stand united against racism," explained Power.

"We need to show that racism in all its manifestations needs to be challenged, that it isn't something football will tolerate."

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Kick It Out spokesman Piara Power
"There is still a lot more to be done"
Uefa chief Gerhard Aigner
"It is as much a problem for us as it is for society"

Latest news

Tackling the problem

On the front line

The European picture

Have your say
Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales