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Dublin: 6°C Friday 16 April 2021

West Ham 'disgusted' by fans' anti-Semitic chants after videos surface on social media

The club have vowed to ban those responsible for the chants.

A general view of West Ham's home stadium.
A general view of West Ham's home stadium.
Image: Bradley Collyer

WEST HAM UNITED say they are “disgusted” by a video of fans engaging in anti-semitic chants and have vowed to ban those responsible.

Manuel Pellegrini’s side lost out 2-1 at Manchester United this afternoon, but the issue of discrimination in English football has reared its head again in the wake of the result.

“We are disgusted by the contents of the video circulating on social media on Saturday evening,” the club said in a strongly worded statement.

We are taking immediate action to try to identify the offenders, whose details we will be handing over to the police and will be banned for life from London Stadium and from travelling with the club.

“West Ham United is unequivocal in its stance – there is no place for this kind of behaviour at our club.

We do not want people like this associated with West Ham. They are not welcome at our club, they are not welcome in civilised society.”

Racism in football

The news comes on the same day a suspect was remanded in custody after Amiens captain Prince Gouano complained of suffering racial abuse during Friday’s Ligue 1 game at Dijon.

The goalless draw in Dijon was halted in the 78th minute as players from both sides stopped playing and headed towards the touchline after monkey chants were directed towards Gouano.

“An inquiry is ongoing and a person is currently in custody in the wake of these events. His custody will be extended tonight, to allow further investigation,” Dijon prosecutor Eric Mathais said in a statement.

It was the latest in a string of incidents of racist abuse that have blighted football this season, and prompted FIFA president Gianni Infantino to urge football authorities across the world to take a “zero tolerance” stance on racism.

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“It’s over,” Gouano said after the game was interrupted. “We’re not playing on. I’m taking off my team-mates. We’re going to the changing room.”

Following discussions between players, coaches and officials Gouano approached the stand by pointing toward supporters in the crowd. Play then resumed.

We are in the 21st century, it’s unacceptable, I marked the incident by stopping play because these days we are all equal,” Gouano told French broadcaster BeIn Sports after the game.

“I heard monkey sounds…” Gouano told reporters afterwards. “I turned around and there indeed was a man who was looking in my direction and who was continuing (to make the noises).”

The French football league (LFP) strongly condemned the abuse and said it would explore legal options, while Dijon said they intended to press charges against the individual.

With reporting from Cian Roche.

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