By 90Min
March 27, 2019

Liverpool legend John Barnes has claimed criticising Montengero supporters for the racial abuse they directed towards some England players on Monday is 'hypocritical', as more should be done to deal with the issue in the UK.

England's 5-1 win at the Podgorica City Stadium was marred by racist chanting directed towards Danny Rose and Raheem Sterling, with calls from all corners of football directed towards UEFA to take action against Montenegro.

However, despite the despicable actions of some select supporters on Monday, the former Liverpool forward found similarities between an incident that occurred in a Premier League match between Manchester City and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge earlier this season, and feels the issue of racism must first be dealt with on British shores.

 "It does not feel any different to how it felt when Raheem Sterling was racially abused by Chelsea fans," he said to Sky Sports.

"Up and down the country every single week at football matches you have black football players being racially abused so why is this any different? I think that it is quite hypocritical that we want to talk about Montenegro and say how terrible it is when we have not taken care of the problem here."

Christopher Furlong/GettyImages

Barnes also questioned the effectiveness of stadium bans, believing the problem of racism is rooted much deeper than just supporters using racist language at matches, and must be tackled at its source.


"The solution is to tackle it in society and once we do that it will disappear from all walks of society of which football is one," he added.

"You can't say to a football fan, 'keep you mouth shut on a Saturday, but for the other six days of the week you can do whatever you want', and then say we are getting rid of racism. We have to decide whether we want to get rid of it, or if we don't want to hear it. All we are doing by passing laws is saying, 'you can be as racist as you want, but not in a football ground.'"

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