Police probe antisemitic chanting as West Ham vows to ban offenders for life
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Police probe antisemitic chanting as West Ham vows to ban offenders for life

London club insists it will take firm action against those caught being racist, while police says 'racial abuse will not be tolerated'

Screenshot of video shows some of the fans accused of using antisemitic chants
Screenshot of video shows some of the fans accused of using antisemitic chants

Police are investigating fans caught on video chanting anti-Semitic slurs before a Premier League match.

West Ham FC have vowed to ban for life those filmed singing the abuse, which happened prior to a Premier League match at Manchester United on Saturday.

They were captured singing an abusive song about rivals Tottenham, who have a large Jewish following, and the clip has since been shared thousands of times on social media .

During the clip, chants heard include: “We’ll be running round Tottenham with out w***** hanging out, singing I’ve got a foreskin how about you, f****** Jew!”

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) are investigating and appealed for information.

Detective Chief Inspector Rebecca Boyce of GMP said: “Here in Manchester we pride ourselves on making sure fans from far and wide are welcomed and it is disappointing that a small few have brought shame on football in this way.

“Let me be really clear – racial abuse will not be tolerated and anyone that partakes in this kind of behaviour can expect to be investigated by the police.

“We welcome West Ham United’s statement which quite rightly condemns these disgusting and abhorrent slurs and we will endeavour to work closely with them to identify those in the video.

“I would also ask anyone with any footage of the incident or information they think can help us to please contact us immediately.”

The West Ham statement read: “We are taking immediate action to try to identify the offenders, whose details we will be handing over to the police and who will be banned for life from London Stadium and from travelling with the club.

“We do not want people like this associated with West Ham United.

“They are not welcome at our club, they are not welcome in civilised society.”

Equality and inclusion organisation Kick It Out tweeted: “We received a report of a video of a group of West Ham fans chanting vile antisemitic abuse today.

“We welcome the swift and positive response of @WestHamUtd and support the club’s determination to ban the perpetrators.”

A recent spate of incidents of racial abuse have prompted FIFA president Gianni Infantino to urge everyone in the game to adopt a zero tolerance approach – and give referees the power to abandon matches.

Board of Deputies Vice President Amanda Bowman welcomed the “swift and welcome statement from West Ham Utd. Yesterday it was anti-Jewish hatred, but a small number of supporters seem to think it’s OK to chant and sing disgusting racist slurs. It is not OK. More must be done to create a real culture change to stop this.”

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