No 10 calls on football authorities to get tough on racism

Downing Street has warned the football authorities they must step up efforts to tackle racism following the latest incident at Sunday’s Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.

Spurs launched an investigation after Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger reported being targeted with monkey chants during the second half of the game at the Tottenham stadium.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman welcomed the inquiry but said it was clear more needed to be done within the sport to address the issue.

He said the Government would be monitoring the response of the football authorities and was ready to take further steps “if required”.

The warning came after the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) issued a call for a Government inquiry into “racism and the rise in hate crime within football”.

The PM’s spokesman said: “Racism of any kind has no place in football or anywhere else and we must confront this vile behaviour.

“Clearly there remains more work to be done by the football authorities in tackling this issue and we are committed to working with them on this to stamp it out.

“The FA, Premier League and English Football League have significantly stepped up their efforts, but we expect them to continue to prioritise this issue and to consult with both players and supporter groups, and we will be monitoring how the football authorities implement their plans through the season.

“We will continue working with the authorities on this, including the Professional Footballers’ Association and we don’t rule out taking further steps if required.”