Unai Emery says that everyone should be together to combat racism in football.
It sounds like an obvious thing to say, but sadly we’ve seen more examples recently of how those with prejudices are allowed express them without sufficient punishment from the game’s governing bodies.
This week, Juventus striker Moise Kean fronted up to racist Cagliari fans having been subjected to abuse from the stands. But rather than get full support from his club he was criticised by teammate Leonardo Bonucci and manager Max Allegri for his actions who chose to blame the victim for his part rather than perpetrators for their abhorrent behaviour.
UEFA have consistently failed to sanction clubs and national sides for incidents of racism, handing out paltry fines which act as no deterrent, and even today England international Danny Rose said he couldn’t wait to ‘see the back of football’ because of the abuse and the lip-service the authorities pay to it.
So, when asked about the problem today, and the possibility of teams walking off the pitch when subjected to racist chanting, the Spaniard said, “I am in agreement.
“I think we need to be together for the action we can take and taking responsibility, each team.
“I agree that we need to be together against racism and not let anything with racism in the stadiums.”
So, on a very basic, we all understand the ‘racism is bad’ thing, except for racists who don’t think it’s bad to be racist because they’re racists. Or, worse, don’t understand they’re racists in the first place.
It’s something we discussed earlier in the season on the Arsecast after Raheem Sterling brought the issue well and truly into the spotlight when he was subjected to racism at Stamford Bridge.
This is an issue which drifts in and out of the football narrative, but this week’s events have shown us there’s still a very long way to go, and we should all be prepared to do our bit and as when we can.