Statistics gathered by the anti-discrimination charity Kick It Out shows that reports of racism in English football has risen by 43%.
And, according to the charity’s chief, Roisin Wood, the claim is that reported racist abuse in the game can be linked to Brexit.
Figures released have marked an increase last season; from 192 to 274, with the charity’s director declaring, “I think you can’t not link them together.
“We’re seeing a lot of reports of ‘go back to where you came from’ which we haven’t seen for a while which seems to be on the back of Brexit.”
Reports of abuse in professional and grassroots football have increased by 32% to 422, up from 319 during 2017-18. A further 159 reports were received via social media, with faith-based discrimination – including Islamophobia and anti-Semitism – rose by 75% from 36 to 63, a higher percentage than any other form of abuse during the period.
“It is the seventh consecutive year reported incidents of discrimination within football have increased, with the 581 total reports is more than double the figure from five years ago”, Wood said.
“If we’re seeing a rise in hate crime, the Home Office, and other bodies, are seeing a rise in hate crime.
“And it’s linked because that’s what is going on in society at the moment.
“Some of the social media reports we’ve seen you wouldn’t want anyone to see.
“Education is key to combating racism”, said England manager, Gareth Southgate:– which must mean ‘in all aspects’ of the game – from boardroom to grassroots!