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It is however reporting on the expected problems in the Ukraine of racism, and so are we.
The England squad has blatantly played to football thugs in the Ukraine by avoiding the selection of Rio Ferdinand, As one of England's top players the reason is plain for all to see. He is not white. At least one black English football player has said that if he is racially abused during a game he will make a stand and walk off the pitch. He has been warned against this and told that he will be yellow carded if he does so. Whilst in some ways his forewarning could in effect lead to racial abuse at least he is prepared to make a stand.
Sadly for some racism and football go together. Ukrainian fans who appear to salute their players fascist style obviously have other prejudices. They may claim that it is simply their way of spurring on their players but it is too reminiscent of a Nazi salute to be ignored.
EURO 2012 began Friday June 8, and already there have been problems. It seems that fans in the other host country, Poland, may be as bad. On Wednesday June 6, a Dutch training session was disrupted with racist chants. Monkey chants accompanied their training session and UEFA authorities are investigating. Initially the incident was "thought to be non racially motivated" but the chants were aimed at black Dutch players.
Today June 10, 2012 there are reports that UEFA authorities are to charge Russian fans. The fans have caused problems during and after matches on Friday and Saturday. The incidents include racially abusing one black player and fighting with match stewards. UEFA monitors are now considering the images and a disciplinary panel will assess what evidence is available on Wednesday.
A statement from UEFA said, "UEFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against the Football Union of Russia for the improper conduct of its supporters"
Footage being collated from the particular matches appears to show extreme right wing flag waving and more. .Racism in football is a fact. It should not be. Countries involved in the sport are trying to combat racism and stamp it out. That is why the allegations that some football players in the UK have behaved in a racist manner in the past are bad news. They set the example when all is said and done.
The rise of the extreme right in Europe however should perhaps be the greatest cause for concern right now.
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