Prince William speaks out to condemn ‘despicable’ racist abuse of footballers

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge talks with guests during a Metropolitan and City Police Orphans Fund reception at St James's Palace to mark the 150th anniversary of the Fund on February 12, 2020 in London
(Image credit: Photo by Victoria Jones - WPA pol/Getty Images)

Prince William has felt compelled to speak out this weekend following several incidents of racist abuse against football players.

  • Prince William has condemned the “despicable” racist abuse that has been leveled at multiple football players. 
  • In a statement released on Twitter and Instagram, the Duke of Cambridge also spoke of how the online platforms where this abuse often takes place also have “responsibility” extended to them.
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Prince William (opens in new tab) took to the official Kensington Royal Instagram and Twitter accounts over the weekend. Here, the future king made a powerful statement calling for an end to racist (opens in new tab) abuse and personally signed off with the initial ‘W’. 

He wrote: ‘Racist abuse - whether on the pitch, in the stands, or on social media - is despicable and it must stop now.

We all have a responsibility to create an environment where such abuse is not tolerated, and those who choose to spread hate and division are held accountable for their actions. That responsibility extends to the platforms where so much of this activity now takes place.'

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'I commend all those players, supporters, clubs and organisations who continue to call out and condemn this abuse in the strongest terms. W ‘

Prince William’s strongly-worded statement comes after multiple instances of racist abuse against footballers. Manchester United players Axel Tuanzebe, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford, as well as Chelsea defender Reece James and West Bromwich Albion’s Romaine Sawyers are all understood to have been sent abusive messages. 

The Duke of Cambridge has been President-Designate of the Football Association since 2006 and has long been a fan of the game. His statement on this important issue has also been echoed over the weekend by the Football Association.

The FA posted a statement headed, ‘FA Condemns Racist Abuse Of Footballers’ on their own Twitter account.  

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The FA declared: ‘We are united with all of football in our abhorrence of any racist abuse. This is not acceptable in any part of society.’

We will continue to work with the rest of the game, the government and social media platforms to remove this - and all elements of - discrimination from our sport.’