Racism row engulfs Rio Ferdinand

Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand stoked further controversy when he defied his manager to boycott wearing an anti racism t-shirt.

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Police investigating alleged racist gesture aimed at West Brom striker

West Brom's Romelu Lukaku celebrates scoring his side's third goal during the Premier League match at Sunderland. Credit: PA

Police are investigating reports that a racist gesture was aimed at West Brom striker Romelu Lukaku by a fan at a Premier League match at Sunderland on Saturday.

Pictures appeared to show a man making monkey gestures at Lukaku, who is black.

The Northumbria Police force said it is "carrying out inquiries after a report of racist abuse was received at the Sunderland vs. West Brom match on Saturday."

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Six arrested over 'abusive' banner at football match

Six people have been arrested over a banner, which reportedly attacked a footballer who was racially abused by a Millwall fan, police said.

The banner was unfurled in a Millwall section of the Lion's New Den ground during their 2-1 win against Derby County.

Bolton striker Marvin Sordell, was abused by fans while warming up for his side's game at the East London club's stadium on 6 October.

A 13-year-old boy was banned from the ground.

40% say racism in football is widespread, poll suggests

Britons think that racism is widespread in national football, and a majority feel it will be impossible to eradicate it completely, according to a poll.

Birmingham City's Curtis Davies wears a One Game Community 'Kick it Out' anti-racism campaign t-shirt during warm-up
Birmingham City's Curtis Davies wears a One Game Community 'Kick it Out' anti-racism campaign t-shirt during warm-up Credit: John Walton/EMPICS Sport

After incidents involving Chelsea's John Terry, Liverpool's Luis Suarez and now alleged comments by referee Mark Clattenburg, the survey revealed four out of ten respondents agreed that racism is widespread in English football, an increase on 31 percent from June 2012.

57 percent said it would be impossible to eliminate racism from football but nearly two thirds (62 percent) said harsher penalties for racist behaviour would reduce the number of racist incidents, according to the ComRes poll for the Sunday Mirror.

After Mark Clattenburg was accused of using "inappropriate language" by Chelsea during last week's match against Manchester United, 62 percent of respondents said referees' conversations with players should be recorded.

Ferdinands' 'committed to working with football's existing organisations'

On the issue of Kick it Out, we would like to go on record to say what fantastic work they have done in the past regarding education and awareness.

However, times change and organisations need to change with them. We are more than happy to join the discussion, privately, to make Kick it Out more relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football.

Although we have been left disappointed by the PFA and the FA's actions over the last year, as a family, we are committed to working with football's existing organisations towards the betterment of the game and to achieve immediate action.

– Rio and Anton Ferdinand

Ferdinand brothers want to help 'stamp out racism in football'

Anton Ferdinand (left) with his brother Rio Ferdinand on the football pitch. Credit: PA Wire

In a wide-ranging statement released by the Ferdinand's management team, NEW ERA GLOBAL SPORTS, the pair have expressed their desire to "work with football's existing organisations towards the betterment of the game and to achieve immediate action".

In addition, they have claimed the Kick it Out organisation, whilst doing good work in the past, needs to change and have offered to work with it to make it "more relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football".

The statement said: "It has been a year since the incident at Loftus Road. During that time, some of the deep divisions that exist in football have been exposed.

"In the coming months there will be ongoing discussions, we are sure, on finding a way forward.

"We intend to participate in these discussions, along with numerous other current and ex professionals of all races, from the grass roots upwards, across the football community as a whole."

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Players' union announces six-point plan to tackle racism in football

Jason Roberts (left) was one of a number of players to boycott the 'Kick It Out' t-shirts.

Players' chief Gordon Taylor has announced a six-point action plan to deal with racism in football after criticism from some members.

The PFA chief executive says the union wants tougher penalties for racist abuse including making it potentially a sackable offence, culprits ordered to attend awareness programmes and a form of the NFL's 'Rooney rule' to boost the number of black coaches and managers.

Read the full story at ITV Sport.

Rio appears to dismiss black players union report

The Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand appears to have rubbished newspaper reports that he was planning to launch a breakaway union to protect the interests of black footballers).

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Read ITV News Sports Editor Steve Scott's blog on why Rio needs to speak his mind on racism.

Ferdinand dropped after anti-racism t-shirt snub

by Rupert Evelyn - ITV News Correspondent
Rio Ferdinand, left, trained under the supervision of Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson today. Credit: PA

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson says the issue with Rio Ferdinand was a 'communication problem' and he'll be rested for tomorrow's Champions League match against Braga.

But the Scot told a press conference that his dispute with the defender had been resolved and that his advice is that "a union is always stronger than an individual."

Ferdinand and Ferguson both pictured at United training

Rio Ferdinand, centre left, trained today under the supervision of Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson (hat). Credit: PA

Rio Ferdinand was training this morning as normal ahead of Manchester United's Champions League encounter with Braga at Old Trafford tomorrow.

The defender defied Sir Alex Ferguson on Saturday by refusing to wear a T-shirt supporting the anti-racism Kick It Out campaign ahead of United's 4-2 win over Stoke, leading his manager to state publicly that the 33-year-old would be "dealt with".

But there have been suggestions that the pair resolved their differences at a meeting yesterday morning and Ferdinand did train with the remainder of his team-mates at Carrington ahead of tomorrow night's game.

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