WOW ! I never thought that I would say anything positive about the well known club in West London, but the swift reaction from them after the nasty comments by some of their season ticket holders in the front row of the Mathew Harding Stand are to be welcomed and praised.
Four of those middle age to elderly so called fans have had their passes pulled and may face lengthy bans and even police action after CCTV analysis.
Back in 2015 Chelsea fans prevented a black man from boarding a Paris Metro train, chanting 'We are racists and proud of it" Believe it or not but 60 year old Colin Wing, one of the four, defended the actions of the fans in Paris, saying that that being a racist was OK, and protesting the action of Chelsea in stopping them coming to Stamford Bridge for a number of years. Wing, from Beckenham in south-east London has also lost his job according to reports.
Raheem Sterling now 24 and a super star for Livepool and later Manchester City and England was surprisingly articulate on Instagram after the abuse while he was taking a corner at The Bridge. When he was 19 I was in the front row of the Centenary Stand at Anfield watching him play. Rumours that he had 1, 2, 3 or more kids already and that he was illiterate were rampant. In fact he had one. Now he has two and is expecting his third. At age 2 in Jamaica his dad was shot dead and with his mother he moved to London and for a time struggled. When he paid £2 million or so for a house for his mum he was crtiticised, as was another young black player who had yet to make the starting line-up.
Elsewhere Phil Foden, still only 18 was praised for doing the same thing. Foden, who I watching at the EURO u17 tournament in Croatia 18 months ago, has just doubled his weekly wage to £30,000 at The Etihad, with a new 4 year deal. A year ago he was named Player of the Tournament as he helped England to win the u 17 FIFA World Cup in India, and is now with The Three Lions u21 squad.
Pep Guardiola, the City Catalan born manager has suggested tha tSterling cut down on his social media comments about his wealth and lifestyle and become more private. " He is an incredible person and an incredible human being" commented Guardiola. "We still have problems with diversity even in the 21st Century. Racism is everywhere".
Meanwhile Lord Ouseley age 73 is stepping down as the head of KICK IT OUT since 1993. He has been in public service for 56 years and was knighted in 1997 and became a Life Peer, Baron Ouseley of Peckham Rye and a seat in the House of Lords. He supports BAME - Black, Asia and Ethic Minorities with many schemes supported by the EPL and other football bodies. 17% of fans at EPL matches are from this group today, up from 12 % a decade ago. He has challenged football leaders and the press for more action against racism in football.