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Platini backs UEFA racism stance

By Football News



Michel Platini says UEFA is doing everything in their power to continue the fight against racism in football.

Disciplinary proceedings have been opened against the Serbian FA following reports of abusive shouts aimed towards England's Under-21 players in Krusevac last week.

The president of the European governing body has backed the organisation's disciplinary committee to investigate the matter thoroughly and hand out the necessary punishment to anyone charged with racial abuse.

"Concerning the Under-21 game between Serbia and England, we will receive the report from the delegates, the report from the officials and from the people who were there," he said on Tuesday.

"We have television images. The disciplinary committee will deal with it."

Platini also revealed that he received a letter from British Sports Minister Hugh Robertson asking for tough sanctions against the Serbian FA.

"The Sports Minister asked me to do something. I answered him as I've just said, which is that we are fighting racism. We are doing a lot of things. The disciplinary committee will decide," he said.

UEFA has been criticised in recent years for not punishing those who have been found guilty of racism with big enough sanctions, but the former France international believes that they are doing all they can to combat the issue.

"We have a lot of associations that we finance and that we help to fight racism. It's not an easy issue, but we are doing everything in our power to eradicate racism in our stadiums," he said.

"We often have important cases in quite a few countries. We try and fight against that. It's a real fight that we've been leading for many years."

The 57-year-old did explain that UEFA has watched some countries more closely than others, and that Serbia's history with racism could count against them in the current investigation.

"More than a year ago we gave a serious yellow card to Croatia and to Serbia, and we will see what the disciplinary committee decides," he said.

"But it's true that it's a problem that concerns us enormously. It's difficult to remove all of that from the stadiums. It's not easy, but we're doing what we can.''