Football racists who peddle hate online could face stadium bans

People place messages of support on top of bin liners that were taped over offensive wording on the mural of Manchester United striker and England player Marcus Rashford on the wall of the Coffee House Cafe on Copson Street, Withington, which appeared vandalised the morning after the England football team lost the UEFA Euro 2021 final. (Image: PA)

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Football yobs who peddle online race hate could be banned from grounds, a minister revealed today.

The Government faces calls to legislate for a ban so culprits who hurl racial abuse on the web are blocked from entering stadiums.

Currently, football banning orders do not cover offences committed online.

More than three quarters of a million people signed a petition demanding lifetime football bans for racist yobs, after England stars including Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka were racially abused following vital penalty misses in the Three Lions' Wembley penalty shootout defeat.

Former FA chairman Lord Triesman urged the Government to look at banning orders for fans who post racist hate.

Speaking during a Lords debate, he said: “The people who were displaying their hooliganism and racism are scum, they have got nothing to do with England or its football team.

“As chairman of the Football Association I sought legislation which would enable us to ban for life – one strike and they're out – anybody convicted of any of these crimes from every football in the ground in the UK – no excuses, no second chances.

“Would the Government support that?”

Culture Minister Baroness Barran told him: “The Government is well aware that football banning orders can have a great effect on those implicated, and this is one of the things we are looking at.”

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A change.org petition calling for the sanction was backed by 857,000 signatures by 1pm today.

It says: “We are calling for the Football Association and the government to work together now to ban all those who have carried out racist abuse, online or offline, from all football matches in England for life.

“Our England team stood up for all of us – now we must stand up for them.”

The petition was launched by a trio of women, Shaista, Amna, Huda, who style themselves as #TheThreeHijabis.

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