Former Arsenal striker Ian Wright has alleged that he was racially abused by several Leicester City fans during Saturday’s Community Shield game, also stating that fellow ITV pundit Roy Keane was called an ‘Irish c*nt’.
Gunners legend Wright claims on social media that both he and Keane were subjected to a torrent of abuse from Leicester supporters inside Wembley Stadium during the Foxes’ 1-0 win against champions Manchester City in English football’s curtain-raiser ahead of the new season.
In a brief video posted to his Twitter account, Wright suggested the Leicester fans ‘mouthed’ derogatory phrases to him, which he implied were of a racist nature, during the game.
He also claims that they used the xenophobic term “Irish c*nt” in reference to former Manchester United skipper Keane, a player capped 67 times by the Republic of Ireland.
“Let me just clear that up because, obviously, Leicester fans know how much respect I’ve got for them and their owners and I’m constantly bigging up Leicester and what they do,” said Wright.
“But I’ve got to say, where we were today doing the punditry from the gantry where we were, some of those Leicester fans, what they were doing, calling Roy ‘Irish c’, mouthing the words to me – they know what words they were mouthing to me – you let yourselves down, bro, big time.
“I’m really disappointed on what was a fantastic day for Leicester City fans. Those fans in front of those kids, throwing the stuff down, what they were doing, mouthing and what they were shouting – disgraceful behavior, man.
“Leicester, you shouldn’t be acting like that, certain fans. You don’t represent Leicester.”
Thank you for not letting this pass, @IanWright0. We’d welcome your help in identifying those involved so they can be held to account. We wholeheartedly condemn all forms of discrimination.
— Leicester City (@LCFC) August 7, 2021
A representative from Leicester City’s social media team was quick to note Wright’s objection and responded on Twitter.
“Thank you for not letting this pass, Ian Wright,” the club responded. “We’d welcome your help in identifying those involved so they can be held to account. We wholeheartedly condemn all forms of discrimination.”
Wright’s objection comes amid growing reports of racism inside the English game amid the ongoing campaign within the sport in support of ‘Black Lives Matter’. It was revealed in recent days that all 20 Premier League clubs will again kneel prior to kick-off as players continue what has become a controversial anti-racism gesture, prompting some sets of English fans to boo their own team during Euro 2020.
Indeed, Wright has also been among a growing list of prominent black athletes in England who have been met with a scourge of racist remarks online, with the 57-year-old saying earlier this year that he was “disappointed” when an Irish teenager who was convicted of sending him racist messages on social media was spared jail time.
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“This case was never about revenge, it was always about consequences for acts of racism. My forgiveness of this young man was for my own deeply personal need and desire to move forward without further anguish,” said Wright at the time.
“Seeing this judgment, I can only wonder what deterrent there is for anyone else who spouts this kind of vile racist abuse.
“An individual wished death upon me because of my skin colour. No judge’s claims of ‘naivety’ or ‘immaturity’ will ever be acceptable to us.
“The supposed immaturity and naivety of our attackers is never any comfort. So yeah, I am disappointed. I’m tired. We’re all tired.”
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