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Page last updated at 16:34 GMT, Friday, 3 October 2008 17:34 UK

Chelsea back anti-racism campaign

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Former Chelsea stars join anti-racism campaign

Former Chelsea stars Paul Canoville and Ken Monkou have helped to kick-start Chelsea's anti-discrimination project.

Throughout the month, Chelsea will be visiting local schools and libraries to talk to pupils about the dangers of all forms of racism and discrimination.

Last week the legends took part in a panel discussion with local youngsters in a bid to highlight both Chelsea and the football industry's work.

Winger Canoville told BBC London 94.9: "Racism did affect me. Now we've got organisations, RED and Kick It Out that are doing something about it, spreading the word.

I came on for the last three minutes at Crystal Palace and I had to sit down in the changing room afterwards because I couldn't believe it was coming from my own supporters

Former Chelsea winger Paul Canoville
"It isn't just about us, it's about our upcoming youngsters that are coming through to pass this message on.

If ever there was a story in football that highlighted the fight against discrimination, it was Canoville's.

In the early 1980's, Canoville was probably unique in that the horrendous abuse he endured was from a significant minority of his own fans at Chelsea.

Recalling his Chelsea debut back in 1981, he said: "It hurt, it really did hurt me.

"I came on for the last three minutes at Crystal Palace and I had to sit down in the changing room afterwards because I couldn't believe it was coming from my own supporters.

"It was just some comforting words from my manager that made me continue playing football."

Monkou, who joined Chelsea in 1989, has also pledged his support to the campaign.

The Dutch defender became Chelsea's first overseas black player of the year and is helping the campaign to stamp out racism.


see also
Portsmouth report Campbell abuse
03 Oct 08 |  Portsmouth
Campbell abuse filthy - Redknapp
01 Oct 08 |  Portsmouth
Chelsea v Aston Villa
02 Oct 08 |  Premier League


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