Following the racist abuse directed at England players during tonight's European Championship qualifier by Bulgaria supporters, Kick It Out have released a statement.


The statement reads: 

“We are sickened by the disgusting racist abuse directed at England men’s team tonight by Bulgaria supporters – including TV footage which appeared to show Nazi salutes and monkey noises.

“We applaud Gareth Southgate, his staff and players for the actions taken in reporting the abhorrent abuse, and offer our full support to the entire squad, their families and anyone affected by those appalling scenes.

“We are encouraged that the protocol was initially enforced by the match officials, but UEFA must explain why players weren’t sent to the dressing room during Step Two, as is clearly stated in the rules. TV footage also clearly shows that racist abuse continued in the second half, so it is unacceptable that Step Three was not enforced. This match should have been abandoned by the officials.

“It’s now time for UEFA to step up and show some leadership. For far too long, they have consistently failed to take effective action. The fact Bulgaria are already hosting this game with a partial stadium closure for racist abuse shows that UEFA’s sanctions are not fit for purpose.

“There can be no more pitiful fines or short stadium bans. If UEFA care at all about tackling discrimination – and if the Equal Game campaign means anything – then points deductions and tournament expulsion must follow.”