Uefa spotters will re­port Bul­garia abuse

The Daily Telegraph - Sport - - Football - By Tom Morgan Re­ac­tion: Tammy Abra­ham has said England play­ers will walk off if racially abused

Un­der­cover spotters have been com­mis­sioned by Uefa be­cause of fears play­ers will be racially abused dur­ing England’s Euro 2020 qual­i­fier in Bul­garia on Mon­day.

Three plain-clothed ob­servers from Fare, the anti-dis­crim­i­na­tion network, will have live com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the gov­ern­ing body to re­lay any reports of abuse.

England play the Czech Re­pub­lic in Prague to­mor­row and on Mon­day go to Sofia’s Vasil Levski Sta­dium, which will have a re­duced ca­pac­ity by or­der of Uefa be­cause of racial abuse dur­ing games against the Czechs and Kosovo in June.

The Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion said the play­ers had agreed to fol­low the Uefa pro­to­col of racial abuse be­ing re­ported first to the ref­eree, who calls for a sta­dium an­nounce­ment. If that fails to solve the prob­lem, the play­ers are taken off the pitch.

How­ever, Tammy Abra­ham, the Chelsea striker, sug­gested that if the sit­u­a­tion was par­tic­u­larly bad, the team would be led off by cap­tain Harry Kane re­gard­less of the pro­to­col.

Such a move would be un­prece­dented from an England team, al­though Gareth South­gate has said in the past that the play­ers and staff would be pre­pared to take mat­ters into their own hands if the sit­u­a­tion re­quired it.

The team were abused by home fans in March in a Euro 2020 qual­i­fier in Mon­tene­gro, for which the hosts were pun­ished by an £18,000 fine and their next game be­ing staged be­hind closed doors.

In Au­gust, Bul­gar­ian club sides PFC Levski Sofia and PFC Loko­mo­tiv Plov­div were pun­ished by Uefa for racism dur­ing Europa League games.

A Fare spokesman said: “Un­for­tu­nately, we can­not com­ment on the pres­ence of our ob­servers be­fore the match for safety rea­sons as they work anony­mously in the sta­di­ums.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.