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Last Updated: Friday, 19 November, 2004, 07:46 GMT
Ferdinand almost quit Spain game
Rio Ferdinand
Rio Ferdinand has said he was ready to come off the field after Spanish fans hurled abuse at England's black players in Wednesday's friendly in Madrid.

England's Shaun Wright-Phillips and Ashley Cole were subjected to monkey chants from sections of the crowd.

And Ferdinand said he would have "had no problem at all" walking off with his team-mates.

"I don't think anybody back in England or on the England team would have blamed us," he told the Sun newspaper.

"It is a difficult call for the manager [to bring the players off], especially when you are losing. But the abuse was disgraceful."

Ferdinand also called for action to be taken against Spanish coach Luis Aragones following alleged racist comments about Arsenal striker Thierry Henry.

Ferdinand said had England coach Sven Goran Eriksson made similar remarks he "would have been sacked - no doubt about it".

"Their manager (Aragones) is meant to have said something racist and he was never punished, which maybe gives a signal out to fans that it's okay," Ferdinand told BBC Radio Five Live.

Jermaine Jenas said the racist abuse during the friendly was the worst he has experienced and that "something has to be done" after monkey chants were aimed at him, Cole and Wright-Phillips in Madrid.

"It was not nice to hear such chants going on," he said. "It was very ignorant and wrong. It was disgraceful.

"Ashley is very upset, he was not happy about the abuse he got."

He added: "That was the worst I have ever experienced. I have encountered it before when playing for Newcastle in Europe but against Spain was the worst.

"Something has to be done or else it will continue to happen. It has to stop somewhere.

"Ashley Cole and Shaun Wright-Phillips were very disappointed about what happened."

On the major issues in the game - hooliganism and racism - if it is England, we would probably be kicked out of the competitions
England right-back Gary Neville

The black players in England's Under-21 team also suffered similar abuse in their 1-0 loss on Tuesday and the focus is now on Uefa and Fifa to see what action they take.

"I just hope Uefa do not just let it slide by because it is not something that should be taken lightly," said Jenas.

"I hope it doesn't get brushed under the carpet. The only thing you can see happening is to ban people from games or don't let them in the stadium."

Spain coach Luis Aragones made derogatory remarks about Arsenal and France striker Thierry Henry in October.

He also fuelled matters when he took a swipe at England's "colonial" history in the build up to Wednesday's match.

Aragones has not issued a personal apology to Henry, although the Spanish FA has apologised to Arsenal.

Jenas added: "It is pretty disgraceful that people can get away with such things.

"I am not sure if there was an apology over what he said about Thierry Henry - if not, then it is disgraceful that someone at such a high level can make such comments without any backlash."

Right-back Gary Neville feels football's governing bodies would punish England in severe fashion if their fans acted like the Spanish supporters.

"I can't understand the abuse and where it comes from I don't know," said Neville.

"But on the major issues in the game - hooliganism and racism - if it is England, we would probably be kicked out of the competitions.

"England get treated differently when it comes to certain issues in football, there is absolutely no doubt about that."




WATCH AND LISTEN
Interview: England's Rio Ferdinand


Interview: FA spokesman Adrian Bevington


Interview: Peter Hargitay fifa spokesman





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