No easy answers over chanting - Mabbutt
Published 21/11/2012 | 13:59
Tottenham ambassador Gary Mabbutt believes fans' chants of 'Yiddos' provides a "difficult" set of questions that will take the relevant bodies a long time to answer.
Spurs have a historic Jewish connection and have defended their supporters, saying they have taken ownership of the phrase to stop it being used as an insult by opposing fans. However, the Society of Black Lawyers insist that argument is not acceptable and will hold talks with the Metropolitan Police before pressing ahead with a complaint.
Asked about the use of 'Yiddos', Mabbutt told Press Association Sport: "It is difficult. I think if it is causing offence to people then it has to be looked at."
He added: "I played at the club for 16 years, I've been involved with the club now for the last 30 years and that has always been something that has been shouted by the supporters.
"An issue is being made of it now but what the outcome of that is going to be, I don't know. The club accept nothing racist whatsoever and the last thing the club want is to be seen to be promoting anything that is going to be seen as being that.
"But, as I say, this is something that has come out of the blue. I don't think anyone has thought that much about it. We certainly haven't heard the last of it and I think it could be ongoing for a while before something is finally sorted out."
The phrase was heard on Tuesday night at Wembley, where former Spurs defender Mabbutt was present at Absolute Radio's Rock 'N' Roll Football Lads' Night In, an event raising money for the Prince's Trust.
On the field, Tottenham are in the midst of a poor run of form that has seen them lose five of their previous six domestic matches.
Attention turns to the Europa League on Thursday and a tough trip to Lazio, where Andre Villas-Boas will be looking for a return to winning ways after defeat in the north London derby. The 5-2 loss at Arsenal has seen pressure intensify on the Tottenham manager, but Mabbutt believes fans should support him.
"We have to be a top-four team every year if we want to compete with the best. The club is very ambitious, we believe that AVB is very ambitious," he said. "He has got a reputation to rebuild after what happened at Chelsea and I just think the coming together of two very ambitious parties is a good marriage."