October 15, 2019 / 11:07 AM / a month ago

UEFA must do more to tackle "vile" racism: UK PM Johnson's spokesman

LONDON (Reuters) - Racist abuse aimed at England players during a match against Bulgaria on Monday was vile and European football’s governing body UEFA must do more to tackle such behavior, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesman said on Tuesday.

The Euro 2020 qualifier between Bulgaria and England in Sofia was twice halted by the referee after monkey noises and chants from the crowd were aimed at England’s black players.

“The racism we saw and heard last night was vile and has no place in football or anywhere else,” Johnson’s spokesman said, adding there needed to be tough penalties in place to act as a real deterrent.

“UEFA need to face up to facts - this stain on football is not being adequately dealt with. Racism and discrimination must be driven out of football once and for all.”

The British government will write to UEFA on Tuesday to ask for an investigation to be conducted swiftly, he said.

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; editing by Stephen Addison

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