October 5 – FIFA must do more to combat the increasing incidents of homophobic chanting according to European football’s anti-discriminatory body FARE.
FIFA released a raft of sanctions earlier this week for homophobic abuse but they weren’t nearly serious enough for those who continue to transgress, according to Piara Powar.
“It’s fine after fine, but harsher punishments are needed,” says Powar.
The latest round of sanctions followed incidents that took place at recent 2018 World Cup qualifiers. Argentina were fined CHF75,000 for two incidents, while Chile were fined CHF35,000 having been punished for homophobic chanting on eight previous occasions during the past two years. Chile had also received a stadium ban during that period.
The other countries disciplined by FIFA include Brazil, Ecuador, Mexico and Panama, while Hungary were fined for alleged homophobic chanting that occurred during September’s match at home to Portugal.
In all five European sides, including world champions Germany, were fined for discriminatory behaviour by their supporters.
FIFA has the power to go as far as deducting points or even banning teams from competitions and although this is the ultimate sanction Powar wants more stadium bans and mandatory education programmes.
“If you look at FIFA’s disciplinary code it doesn’t specifically mention homophobic chants. Those regulations need to change,” he said.
“We continue to have conversations with FIFA and will meet them again to discuss the issues next year.”
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