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  1. ITV Report

Paul Gascoigne to appear in court over an alleged racist 'joke'

Paul Gascoigne will appear in court accused of racially aggravated abuse.

Former England footballer Paul Gascoigne will appear in court over a racist "joke" he is alleged to have made at one of his shows.

He has been summonsed to appear before magistrates, accused of racially aggravated abuse after allegedly making the joke about a black bouncer at one of his An Evening With Gazza shows in November.

The 49-year-old, who has battled alcoholism for years, will appear at Wolverhampton Magistrates' Court on June 17 to answer the summons and be charged with the offence, the Crown Prosecution Service said.

It follows a police investigation into a complaint made about the star's conduct during the show.

It is understood the decision on whether to proceed with a prosecution has been with CPS lawyers since then.

Gascoigne's agent Terry Baker was not available for comment.

A talented midfielder, originally from Gateshead, Gascoigne was described as the most gifted footballer of his generation and at his peak in the 1990s

In the peak of his career he played for Spurs, Newcastle Utd, Everton and Glasgow Rangers.

Paul Gascoigne celebrates his famous goal against Scotland at Euro 96. Credit: PA

But he has suffered recurring bouts of alcoholism and drying out before relapsing.

Earlier this year he insisted during an Good Morning Britain interviewthat he was "back to his best after a two-day blip" after he was photographed looking dishevelled holding bottles of gin.