Chelsea defender Reece James is the latest footballer to reveal vile abuse received on social media
Reece James has shared some of the vile racist messages he received on social media and insisted
‘something needs to change’ after the Chelsea defender became the fourth player to be targeted this week.
The England international shared a screenshot on his Instagram account featuring several racist messages
sent to him with the caption “something needs to change!” written over the messages.
Chelsea said they were ‘disgusted’ by the abuse James had received and called for more urgent action.
A club statement read:
‘Everyone at Chelsea FC is disgusted with the racist abuse Reece James received on social media
on Friday evening.
‘This club finds racism and all forms of discriminatory behavior completely unacceptable.
We totally condemn it. In sport, as in wider society, we must create a social media environment where
hateful and discriminatory actions are as unacceptable online as they would be on the street.
‘We add our voice to those urging social media platforms and regulatory authorities to take stronger,
more effective and more urgent action against this despicable behaviour. Something needs to change
and it needs to change now.’
The abuse of James comes after the news that Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter will be handed fines
for the abuse of footballers, if they fail to protect them under tough new rules drawn up by ministers.
This means they will have to deal with anonymous abusers so the police can take action,
Sportsmail understands. Man United urged social media companies to ‘strengthen measures’ after
being left ‘disgusted’ by the abuse Tuanzebe and Martial received.
One comment on Tuanzebe’s Instagram account read ‘DAMNNN N*****’ as well as several monkey
emojis on a photograph of his United shirt and number, posted two weeks ago.
A United statement read: ‘Everyone at Manchester United is disgusted by the racial abuse received
by players via social media after last night’s game.
‘We utterly condemn it and it is encouraging to see other fans condemn this on social media also.
‘Manchester United has zero-tolerance of any form of racism or discrimination and a long-standing
commitment to campaigning against it through our All Red All Equal initiative.
‘Identifying these anonymous mindless idiots remains problematic. We urge social media platforms and
regulatory authorities to strengthen measures to prevent this kind of behaviour.’
The club’s Director of Communications, Charlie Brooks, said the United players are ‘sick’ of the ‘hate-filled
‘ abuse online and urged social media platforms to create verifiable and identifiable accounts so the
perpetrators can be caught.
Now, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has said the government will deliver regulation,
which will allow companies to be held to account for abuse on the online platforms –
and that will include forcing companies to tackle anonymous abusers.
Jordan Henderson and Tyrone Mings have also held talks with Government ministers this week about
tackling abuse in football.
Kick It Out chair Sanjay Bhandari said this week: ‘We are disappointed that players are continuing to
be subject to racist abuse on their social platforms, it is completely unacceptable.
‘We will continue to work with the football authorities, law enforcement and social media companies
to try and rid football of hateful and discriminatory behaviour.’