Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

FIFA to meet racism victims

CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb will head a new FIFA task force to tackle racism

FIFA's new anti-racism chief wants to meet the perpetrators and victims of racial abuse in the Premier League as part of a fact-finding mission.

Jeffrey Webb, the president of the CONCACAF federation, is to head up a new FIFA task force to tackle racism and is to come to England to see how the Football Association has responded to the Luis Suarez and John Terry cases.

Asked about the two cases, Webb, from the Cayman Islands, said: "It is a huge concern to be honest. During a game for me it is unacceptable, I think the incidents were unacceptable."

He continued: "The FA has been very aggressive in their campaign and I think if these incidents do exist in an environment such as the Premier League then it begs the question what happens in some other leagues where they don't have the resources and the will and the desire as the English FA has had over the years.

"I will be meeting with the FA chairman David Bernstein and visiting the FA. At that time I would also like to meet with some of the players, perhaps have a round-table discussion to talk to the players and get their input, get some suggestions from them and learn from what their experiences are.

"Obviously there's a number of players who have been victimised, targeted. Plus we would like to hear both sides really."

Webb, speaking in Edinburgh at the International FA Board, said he hoped to meet the FA before the end of April, and insisted that black players had been let down by football's authorities.

He added: "We've been talking for a long time in football and I don't really think that we've supported the players. I don't think we've necessarily put the right sanctions in place to support them. It's a travesty that it comes to that.

"We as FIFA and the governing bodies have to make sure that players like Kevin Prince-Boateng and all the players around the world have the same rights and opportunities.

"I really don't think that financial instruments in today's world is enough to deal with it. With the money that's involved in football today, the fines that are being established, I don't think they're working, obviously."

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