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Henderson demands stronger punishments for racism

Several of the weekend’s Premier League games were marred by abusive behaviour from spectators.

Jordan Henderson, top left, lines up with England ahead of the game in Bulgaria where they suffered racist chanting (Nick Potts/PA)
Jordan Henderson, top left, lines up with England ahead of the game in Bulgaria where they suffered racist chanting (Nick Potts/PA)

By Carl Markham, PA, Salzburg

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has called for stronger punishments and greater education to combat the seemingly growing number of racist incidents at football matches.

Sunday’s Manchester derby was marred by a City supporter allegedly making a racist gesture at United midfielder Fred.

A 13-year-old Burnley fan was ejected for an alleged racist gesture aimed at Tottenham’s Son Heung-min, two Wolves fans were arrested on suspicion of using homophobic gestures at Brighton and Everton were also investigating alleged homophobic chanting.

They are the latest in a long list of similar incidents – Henderson himself was caught up in it on England duty in Bulgaria in a Euro 2020 qualifier – and the midfielder believes plenty more still has to be done to tackle the issue.

“It’s a topic we are probably speaking about a little too much at the minute, especially what I’ve experienced recently on international duty,” he said.

“It’s not a nice topic to speak about, but it’s one where we need to come together as players, clubs, supporters and start to fight it again, with stronger punishments, more education.

“It’s a problem. We can’t pretend it’s happening in every other country and not in ours. It’s happening everywhere. We have to fight it as best as we can.”

PA

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