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FA to work with Government and social media companies to tackle racist abuse

Chelsea defender Reece James, West Brom’s Romaine Sawyers and Manchester United duo Axel Tuanzebe and Anthony Martial have all received racist abuse.

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The Football Association has responded to the recent incidents of players receiving online racist abuse (PA)

The Football Association has responded to the recent incidents of players receiving online racist abuse (PA)

The Football Association has responded to the recent incidents of players receiving online racist abuse (PA)

The Football Association has vowed to work with the Government and social media platforms to eradicate racism from the game.

Chelsea defender Reece James, West Brom’s Romaine Sawyers and Manchester United duo Axel Tuanzebe and Anthony Martial were all targets of online racist abuse this week.

And the governing body has reiterated its commitment to clamp down on discrimination of all kinds.

A statement released on the FA’s official Twitter account said: “We are united with all of football in our abhorrence of any racist abuse. This is not acceptable in any part of society.

“We will continue to work with the rest of the game, the government and social media platforms to remove this – and all elements of – discrimination from our sport.”

England international James also received the support of national team.

A post on the Three Lions’ official Twitter account said: “Every time one of our players – or anybody – faces abuse, it only increases our determination to stamp racism out of the game.

“As the national team, it is our duty to drive change and to ensure that no individual has to endure what Reece has.”

The FA spoke out after Chelsea threw their weight behind calls for social media companies to step up efforts to tackle trolls following James revealing he had been targeted on Friday evening.

A statement issued via the Blues’ official Twitter account said: “Everyone at Chelsea is disgusted with the racist abuse Reece James received on social media on Friday evening.

“This club finds racism and all forms of discriminatory behaviour completely unacceptable. We totally condemn it.

“In sport, as in wider society, we must create a social media environment where hateful and discriminatory actions are as unacceptable online as they would be on the street.

“We add our voice to those urging social media platforms and regulatory authorities to take stronger, more effective and more urgent action against this despicable behaviour.

“Something needs to change and it needs to change now.”

James addressed the issue again in an Instagram post on Saturday.

He posted: “We all have a part to play in making this world a better & more equal place! Racism is completely unacceptable! Human is our only race! @instagram you must do more!! #notoracism”.

Chelsea team-mates Thiago Silva and Cesar Azpilicueta were among those to tweet in support for James.

Speaking on Friday about the earlier incidents, Premier League chief executive Richard Masters had said: “Tackling online hate is a priority for football, and I believe social media companies need to do more.”

Relating to the abuse of Sawyers, West Midlands Police said a 49-year-old man from Kingswinford, near Birmingham, was questioned in custody on Friday evening.

The force’s football hate crime officer is also investigating reports of another racist comment towards the player.

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