The Football Association has said it is “appalled” after a number of England players were subjected to racist abuse on social media following the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 loss to Italy.
Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all missed from the spot on Sunday night as England went down on penalties.
The trio’s social media pages were quickly flooded with racist comments, leading the FA to release a statement condemning the “disgusting behaviour”.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson also condemned the racist abuse, saying those responsible should be “ashamed of themselves”.
A spokesperson said: “The FA strongly condemns all forms of discrimination and is appalled by the online racism that has been aimed at some of our England players on social media.
“We could not be clearer that anyone behind such disgusting behaviour is not welcome in following the team. We will do all we can to support the players affected while urging the toughest punishments possible for anyone responsible.
We could not be clearer that anyone behind such disgusting behaviour is not welcome in following the team
“We will continue to do everything we can to stamp discrimination out of the game, but we implore government to act quickly and bring in the appropriate legislation so this abuse has real life consequences.
“Social media companies need to step up and take accountability and action to ban abusers from their platforms, gather evidence that can lead to prosecution and support making their platforms free from this type of abhorrent abuse.”
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The Metropolitan Police also condemned the “unacceptable” abuse, adding it will be investigating the “offensive and racist” social media posts.
The force said in a statement on Twitter: “We are aware of a number of offensive and racist social media comments being directed towards footballers following the #Euro2020 final.
“This abuse is totally unacceptable, it will not be tolerated and it will be investigated”.
The official Twitter account for the England men’s and women’s national teams offered support to the targeted players.
It said in a statement: “We’re disgusted that some of our squad – who have given everything for the shirt this summer – have been subjected to discriminatory abuse online after tonight’s game.
“We stand with our players.”
London Mayor Sadiq Khan called on social media companies to do more to hold to account those responsible for sending online abuse.
He wrote on Twitter: “There is absolutely no place for racism in football or anywhere else.
“Those responsible for the disgusting online abuse we have seen must be held accountable – and social media companies need to act immediately to remove and prevent this hate.”
Football players and celebrities also stood by the England team and called out the “disgusting” racist comments on social media.Aston Villa player Ashley Young wrote that he was “gutted for the boys” who had “done this country proud and brought our nation together”.”Within minutes the trolls started racially abusing players, it’s ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTING!!!” he Tweeted.
Former Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Magid Magid wrote: “The racist abuse I’ve seen targeted at these incredibly talented young players who helped take us to our first major tournament final in 55 years has been vile and disgusting.” “England wouldn’t have achieved what it did without them. They deserve all our love and support! x” he added above a picture of Saka, Rashford and Sancho.
Activist, political commentator and author of the book ‘This is why I resist’, Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu wrote:
“The way England treats #MarcusRashford #Saka #Sancho will define it for the next decade not the #penalties. Some really ugly disgusting repulsive stuff out there”. “England you are showing your true colours,” she added.
Former Gogglebox regular, Tom Malone Jr also called the reactions “disgusting”, Tweeting: “These people were probably singing his praises when he was smashing it and keeping us in the competition.”The minute he doesn’t score a penalty it’s straight back to racism. He’s done us all proud and doesn’t deserve this,” he wrote above an image of 19-year-old Saka.
Social media personality Michael Dapaah wrote on Twitter: “The reactions of some people after this game, the abuse, violence & racism that’s coming out now is how people really feel deep down. “They ‘celebrate’ & ‘love you’ when you’re winning the moment a mistakes made the realness comes out. Fake!”