FA claims no evidence of racist chants at Ferdinands

The English FA has said that they have not found evidence of racist chants aimed towards Rio and Anton Ferdinand during England’s World Cup qualifier against San Marino last Friday.  Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) made an official complaint to Fifa over racism chants by England fans in England’s World Cup qualifier, but the English FA has said that there is no evidence with FARE’s case.

“The FA takes all incidents and allegations of racism extremely seriously,” The FA said in a statement today.. “In San Marino, we had FA security officers monitoring the English supporters in the stadium. This includes recorded video footage.

“We also worked closely with UK Police in advance of and on the night of the game.

“While we have no reason to dispute the media reports which are without doubt made for the right reasons of fighting racism, at this time we have not found any recorded evidence of the specific discriminatory chanting referring to Rio and Anton Ferdinand and the vile ‘bonfire’ song. We will of course continue to review all of our recorded footage.

“We recognize the importance of FARE’s responsibility to report any incidents to Fifa. We will liaise with Fifa and work with them to assist any investigation.

“Should evidence of any racial chanting be found, we would expect action to be taken against any individuals.

“We would expect banning orders to be issued by the courts as a minimum penalty.

“We do not want supporters who chant vile or racist abuse following the England team.”

Racist chants at England’s match were reportedly aimed at Manchester United center-back Rio Ferdinand and his brother, Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.  Rio had been called up to the England squad for the first time since 2011 by manager Roy Hodgson, but withdrew from the squad due to his “pre-planned training program.”  Rio, 34, has hit out at the England supporters chanting racist abuse tweeting, “You expect+accept banter from fans on the terraces as its part of what makes the game great, but racism is not banter& from ya own fans. WOW.”

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