West Ham fans reported to FA by Kevin Kilbane for mocking the disabled in chant about Harry Kane
West Ham fans have become embroiled in fresh chanting allegations after Kevin Kilbane told the FA they mocked the disabled in a chant about Harry Kane.
During Sunday’s match against Tottenham, it’s alleged that the visiting fans sang “Harry Kane talks like a mong and plays like one too”, using a derogatory term for people with learning disabilities. Kilbane says the FA will investigate.
Kilbane, a TV pundit and former Republic of Ireland international, was not at the Premier League game but was told of the chants by Andy Merriman, a Tottenham season-ticket holder, author and ghost writer of Kilbane’s autobiography Killa.
Kilbane and Merriman both have daughters with Down’s syndrome whilst the former is a patron of the Down’s Syndrome Association.
“It was very clear and sadly it appeared to be from a large number of West Ham fans in the ground,” Kilbane told the Mirror and the Mail. “This was not isolated to a handful of people.
“I am sure they understand they are causing offence. You cannot sweep it under the carpet and label it as ignorance. It is visible and clear and, like racist or homophobic chanting, it is intended to cause offence. I want to be able to take my kids to football matches and when Elsie (his 10-year-old daughter) gets older she will understand about her condition and I would not want her to hear that kind of chanting. If her sister Isla heard it, she would be devastated too, as my friend’s sons were.”
Harry Kane won a crucial late penalty before scoring Harry Kane won a crucial late penalty before scoring
He continued: “I spoke to him and he was extremely upset and I felt I had to report it. No family should have to put up with it at football matches.
“It is also extremely offensive towards Harry Kane, who is only a young lad, starting out in the game and who does not deserve that kind of disgusting abuse just because he is a footballer.
“This is a wider society problem, not just a problem with football, and idiots are using football as a tool to show their ignorance and discrimination.
“I have spoken to the FA and they have assured me they will investigate it thoroughly. In all my time playing and watching football I have never heard this before. Hopefully we can do something to make sure it isn’t again and this awful chant does not spread.”
The allegations are the latest in a string of incidents to have rocked football in recent days. Chelsea fans were filmed refusing a black man entry to a train in Paris whilst singing about being racist.
Video footage has also emerged appearing to show West Ham fans singing anti-Semitic songs travelling from White Hart Lane on Sunday.
West Ham have already promised to take strong action against anyone found guilty of anti-Semitic behaviour – potentially issuing life bans from their stadium.
From the Independent