London (AFP) – The Football Association lent its full support to Rhian Brewster, the leading scorer in England’s Under-17 World Cup victory earlier this year, over his claims of suffering racial abuse and said it would push for “appropriate response from the relevant authorities”.
The 17-year-old — who is yet to make his debut for Liverpool’s first team — claimed Thursday UEFA “don’t really care” about racism.
Brewster said he had witnessed racial abuse — either aimed at him or a teammate — seven times this year.
The FA in a statement on Friday said they understood his frustrations.
“In Rhian’s case, we have visited him at his club to discuss his concerns and understand his frustration at the perceived lack of action,” read the statement.
“He has our full support and we will continue to push for appropriate responses from the relevant authorities.”
The FA added they wanted to collaborate closely with UEFA and world governing body FIFA over the issue.
“Our hope is to work closely with UEFA and FIFA to learn from these issues and to ensure a better way forward in order to protect young players,” said the FA.
Brewster — who scored two hat-tricks in two games at the Under-17 World Cup including one in the semi-final against Brazil — told Thursday’s edition of The Guardian UEFA were turning a blind eye to the issue.
“I don’t think UEFA take this thing seriously. They don’t really care. That is how it feels anyway, like it has been brushed under the carpet,” he said.
Brewster said UEFA have yet to hold an inquiry into an incident involving Russian side Spartak Moscow three weeks ago where he claims he was the target of a racist remark by opposing captain Leonid Mironov.
Mironov denies he made a racial slur during the UEFA Youth League match.
Brewster, who says he also suffered abuse in a European Championship Under-17 match against Ukraine and when playing Spanish outfit Sevilla in an Under-19 clash, admits the slurs have an effect.
“On the day it happens, that night my head won’t be there. I just want to be left alone,” he said.
“I want to be by myself and left to think. The next day I’ll still be thinking about it.
Under UEFA’s rules any player found guilty of making racial slurs can be suspended for a minimum of 10 matches.
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