Millwall, FA officials shocked at racism claims around stadium

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Executives at Millwall FC say they are “appalled” at the footage shown Monday in a Sky Sports investigation on racism at the second-tier England club’s infamously rugged grounds.

Further, the Football Association (England’s governing body) has contacted Leeds United to open an investigation of the incident back in November, when the visiting team’s midfielder El Hadji Diouf had complained bitterly of racist chants in the grounds that day at the New Den.

The Sky Sports report said Diouf had been subjected to racist abuse 56 times.

On the one hand, this is surely the proper response.

On the other hand, the suits at the FA and at Millwall are trying to tell us they don’t know this stuff goes on? At Millwall, where the notoriously gritty southeast London ground has long been the very antithesis of “family friendly!”

There is a “Captain Renault effect” at work. You know … “Shocked to find gambling going on here!”

This report from The Guardian says the FA promises to investigate. Frankly, I’m not sure what there is to “investigate.”  This hardly calls for The Mentalist. The damning Sky Sports footage is pretty clear as it shows one angry figure repeatedly shouting an ugly term.

And it pretty clearly shows Diouf appearing to alert the referee.

I fall more in line with former Welsh international Jason Brown. What he told Sky Sports:

Regarding the Millwall issue, how many times has that happened at this particular place? Where’s the CCTV?  Where are the police? Where are the stewards? These people, they seem to, when it suits them, they go hiding. But they’ll make numbers. They’ll make statistics.”

Hard to argue the point.