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Dublin: 9°C Monday 10 May 2021

Hudson-Odoi slams 'disgusting' racist abuse and supports idea of England walking off the pitch

The young Blues winger said it was right to consider walking off the pitch in light of Monday’s unsavoury scenes in Sofia.

CHELSEA PRODIGY CALLUM Hudson-Odoi has supported the idea of walking off the pitch as a team in response to racist abuse at football grounds.

The Chelsea winger suffered abuse on his first start for the Three Lions in Montenegro last May which he described as ‘evil’ at the time.

Hudson-Odoi is hoping to force his way into Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2020 squad as he makes his way back from an Achilles injury suffered last season.

The 18-year-old scored twice in a 5-1 win for England’s under-21s against Austria on Tuesday and said he was proud of the solidarity shown by the senior players and coaching staff when questioned about the unsavoury scenes in Bulgaria.

“It’s disgusting to hear or see players getting discriminated against,” Hudson-Odoi told reporters.

“It’s not right. I say to myself whenever that happens you have to stick together as a team, which the boys did.

“I am really proud to see the boys stick together in those situations where they say they would walk off the pitch. It is right because no player should be treated differently.

“We’re all equal and it’s an equal game, so we have got to stay strong. Hopefully everything will be sorted out properly by UEFA.”

Bulgaria’s coach Krasimir Balakov apologised to England’s players who suffered derogatory abuse after initially claiming he didn’t hear any racism during the Three Lions 6-0 win.

England midfielder Jordan Henderson admitted the players were motivated to make Bulgaria ‘suffer’  for the chants they heard from the stands.

Gareth Southgate’s side have now all but confirmed qualification for next year’s tournament with a victory against either Montenegro and Kosovo in November to sew up their passage.

Hudson-Odoi is putting himself in the frame to be selected with his impressive form for Chelsea since getting back to full fitness.

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He has picked up a single assist in each of his matches against Brighton, Lille and Southampton, while scoring in the 7-1 Carabao Cup romp versus Grimsby Town.

The youngster burst on to the scene last season with four goals and two assists in Chelsea’s Europa League campaign – which ended with the Blues beating Arsenal in the final.

Bayern Munich were interested in acquiring Hudson-Odoi but the attacker chose to remain at Chelsea after Maurizio Sarri departed and Frank Lampard was installed.

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