August 5 – UK Police have arrested eleven people over online racial abuse of England players after the Three Lions’ defeat in the Euro 2020 final on penalties.
In the shootout, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all missed and the trio were targeted by racist social media posts after the final. The wave of racial abuse led to widespread condemnation and police have now made eleven arrest over the hate crimes following an extensive investigation.
“There are people out there who believe they can hide behind a social media profile and get away with posting such abhorrent comments,” said chief constable and National Police Chiefs’ Council Football Policing Mark Roberts.
“They need to think again – we have investigators proactively seeking out abusive comments in connection to the match and, if they meet a criminal threshold, those posting them will be arrested.”
The age of those arrested so far ranges from 18 to 63. They have all been bailed or released pending further investigation.
New data shows that more than two in five Premier League players received abusive messages on Twitter last season. Online hate detection company Signify monitored and analyzed the social media platform for levels of abuse and found that 20% of the abuse was leveled at just four players, without naming those players.
The19-year-old Arsenal forward Bukayo Saka, who took England’s final penalty and missed in the final, said he was “speechless” after his club presented him with a wall of supportive messages. “How do I even say thank you for all of this?” he asked.
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