Portsmouth South MP calls for inquiry into racism in football

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MP Mike Hancock was among a group of backbenchers calling for an inquiry into racism in football, claiming the FA and individual clubs are ‘dragging their feet’ over the issue.

The comments from members of the All-Party Football Group (APFG) came after Oldham defender Tom Adeyemi broke down in tears after apparently being subjected to racist abuse from a supporter in the stands at Anfield during an FA Cup clash with Liverpool.

A 20-year-old man was arrested and bailed for allegedly racially abusing the player at the match on Friday.

Mr Hancock, Lib Dem MP for Portsmouth South and a member of the APFG, said: ‘An inquiry will be welcome, but it has to have real teeth.

‘The abuse is completely unacceptable.’

Race rows have plagued football in recent weeks, with England captain John Terry accused of racially abusing a player – a claim he strenuously denies – and Liverpool’s Uruguayan star Luis Suarez receiving an eight-match ban for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.

‘The FA itself has dragged its feet repeatedly over this,’ said Mr Hancock.

‘It is so unable to feel the resentment over its inaction over racism and the general malaise football is in.”

Mr Hancock aimed his ire at the clubs involved.

‘It’s totally irresponsible, the clubs’ attitude on it,’ he said.‘They are talking the talk but they are not doing much about it.’