Football fans caught chanting anti-Semitic abuse at this weekend’s Premier League match between Tottenham and Chelsea should feel “the full force of the law”.
Ahead of Sunday’s match at Wembley Stadium, Action Against Discrimination, a charity set up to combat racism in football, and the Board of Deputies, with the support of Kick It Out, have called on both clubs, the FA and Metropolitan Police to remind fans of their behaviour.
Board of Deputies President Jonathan Arkush and Vice President Marie van der Zyl said: “Sick racist chanting of the type heard at this year’s FA Cup Semi Final has been an enduring part of the football scene in this country for far too long now. It is a criminal offence and any perpetrators should be arrested and feel the full force of the law.”
AAD chairman Jonathan Metliss said: “A new football season is upon us and sadly the issue of anti-Semitism in the game still persists. Action Against Discrimination and the relevant authorities are doing their utmost to curtail it. It must be eradicated.”
Tottenham Hotspur has also released a statement, saying: “Anti-Semitism in any form is wholly unacceptable and we support all efforts to kick it out of the game. It is an issue we monitored closely at White Hart Lane and our approach will be the same at Wembley. We always liaise with the police and Chelsea ahead of our matches.”
The call was also backed by Kick It Out, with Chair, Lord Ouseley, Chair of Kick It Out, reiterating the stance of football’s equality and inclusion organisation. He said: “Kick It Out supports the efforts of Action Against Discrimination and The Board of Deputies of British Jews in urging football fans to create an environment free from discrimination and hate.
“All supporters are required to conduct themselves appropriately and not take part in discriminatory or abusive chants or behaviour at matches across all levels of the sport.
“Should any supporters witness any incidents of discrimination they can report to Kick It Out via the organisation’s website at kickitout.org or by phoning 0800 169 9414.”