Nigerian-born bulky striker, Adebayo Akinfenwa has added his voice to the call for stiffer sanctions and penalties against anyone or teams found culpable of racist action or speech in football circles.
In reaction to recent incidents across Europe, Akinfenwa says players and other stakeholders in football must do more to eradicate racism from the game following a spate of incidents over the weekend.
Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha and Watford captain Troy Deeney suffered online abuse over the weekend, while there were a number of alleged racist incidents at matches across the leagues.
Zaha says only tougher punishments will deter people from racially abusing players and that social media only makes the problem worse.
Raheem Sterling has received widespread praise for his public stance against racism this season, after the Manchester City forward said he is proud to be black and called on more footballers to speak out against racism in the round leather game.
In response to it all, Akinfenwa is now calling for other players to follow the England forward’s lead in calling all forms of racism out.
Akinfenwa stated: “This is a society problem – period. We’ve all go to try and step up and tackle this problem.
“Social media has provided an avenue for people to sit behind their phones and keyboards and put it out there.
“Social media has its pros and its cons and it does highlight the problems we have got within our community and our society.
“At the same time I would not say it’s just a social media problem, I think it’s a community problem, a social problem and not something we are going to find an answer to overnight.
“I think right now, at the forefront, we all have got to try and do more. The media also has to step up and the governing bodies have to step up.”