Richard Caborn demands UEFA bring in tough punishments to combat football racism

FORMER Sports Minister Richard Caborn is urging UEFA to throw the book at Bulgaria following the shameful scenes which marred Monday’s Euro 2020 qualifier in Sofia.

Richard Caborn.
Richard Caborn.

The governing body is facing calls to expel Bulgaria from the competition after their game with England was twice stopped in the first half due to monkey chants and Nazi salutes from far-right hooligans.

Caborn believes that UEFA and FIFA have both been noticeably slow in adopting stricter punishments to incidents in the past – and must immediately take a zero tolerance approach to racism.

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He told The Yorkshire Post: “The argument a decade ago that I put to (Michel) Platini and (Sepp) Blatter was that it’s only when you start deducting points and eliminating teams from competitions that they (countries) know. They will always find the money to pay (fines) and it is not good enough.

“There needs to be a points deduction depending on what the competition is or an exclusion.

“It should be written into the rules of the competition before everybody starts and countries and football associations warned that if their fans act in that way these are the sanctions that will be taken.

“The one thing that hurts teams is points deductions or exclusions from competitions. That is when the authorities will be seen to be serious about racism.”