Today’s back pages: Uefa ‘disgrace’ as Bulgaria racists avoid big penalty
A round-up of the sport headlines from UK newspapers on 30 October
The Daily Express reports that European football’s governing body Uefa has been accused of “throwing away the chance to make the biggest-ever statement on racism”.
Bulgaria have been fined £65,000 and ordered to play two matches behind closed doors - one suspended for two years - after supporters racially abused England players during the Uefa 2020 qualifier in Sofia earlier this month.
The BBC reports that Uefa’s punishment has been criticised by anti-racism charity Kick it Out, anti-discrimination body Fare and the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA).
“Uefa isn’t working”, says the Daily Mirror, and Kick it Out wants the disciplinary process “ripped up”.
In a statement Kick it Out said: “We feel Uefa’s entire disciplinary process in response to racial discrimination should be overhauled.
“We urge them to explain the decision-making process behind their sanctions for incidents of discrimination.
“We are disheartened, but not surprised, to learn of Uefa’s response to the racist abuse directed at England players. In our view, they have missed an opportunity to send an uncompromising message on racism and discrimination.
“The current sanctions, however ‘tough’ Uefa think they may be, are clearly not working and leave victims with little faith in their ability to prevent abusive behaviour.”