Spurs fans defy FA with 'yid army' chant ahead of ballot
Club set to quiz fans about controversial 'Y-word' after FA reopens the debate over its use
SPURS fans defied the FA on Saturday as they chanted 'yid army' throughout their side's match against Norwich, despite attempts by football's governing body to stamp out the term.
The songs came ahead of claims that the club would ballot its season ticket holders over use of the controversial word, which has been adopted by supporters at White Hart Lane, despite its negative overtones.
Many Tottenham fans describe themselves as 'yids' thanks to their club's connection to north London's Jewish community, even though it is a derogatory term for Jews.
The club has refused to condemn its supporters for using the 'Y-word' and has described it as "a defence mechanism in order to own the term and thereby deflect anti-Semitic abuse".
However, not everyone agrees. A year ago Peter Herbert, the head of the Society of Black Lawyers, threatened to report anyone using the phrase to the police, and last week the FA reopened the debate by declaring that those who used it could be given a banning order or even face prosecution.
However, Spurs fans were angered by the move and made their feelings known at the weekend.
The Tottenham Hotspur Supporters Trust "is unhappy with the way that English football's governing body has brought the issue back on to the agenda, and it insists the fans will be the only ones who decide whether it is time to drop the chants," explains the Daily Mail.
The group's chairman Darren Alexander has claimed that Spurs are preparing to send out a questionnaire on the issue. "If Spurs fans genuinely are going to stop using this word then it should be our decision," he says. "It shouldn't be something that is trying to be forced on us by the FA or Peter Herbert."
The FA announcement last week has also caused some confusion, as Eurosport explains: "The FA's warning that any fan who chants the Y-word could be prosecuted under criminal law is muddied by the fact that police would have to prove the person who chants the phrase did so with the intention to cause offence." ·