Saturday 23 September 2017

We feel ashamed and disgusted over Paris racism - Mourinho

Sam Wallace

Roman Abramovich was described as "disgusted" yesterday at the racist behaviour of Chelsea fans on the Paris Metro, a rare occasion when the club have made a public declaration about their owner's feelings on an issue.

The sentiment from Abramovich, conveyed by the club's director of communications Steve Atkins, underlined the severity with which Chelsea view the actions of some of their fans towards a black man they prevented boarding a Metro train on Tuesday.

Chelsea later suspended a further two fans from Stamford Bridge while the incident is being investigated, following the three supporters banned.

The club began Mourinho's conference with a statement read on behalf of the club by Atkins in which Chelsea expressed their "disgust" at the fans who chanted "We're racists - and proud of it". The club said they were "appalled" by the mobile phone footage of the incident and wanted to "apologise unreservedly to Souleymane (the victim) for the behaviour of a small number of individuals and their unforgivable actions towards him."

The club have written to the man, known as Souleymane S, whose full identity has not been disclosed, to invite him to be a guest of the club's board for the return leg against Paris Saint-Germain on 11 March.

On Souleymane S, Mourinho said: "At this moment, he has maybe the wrong idea of what Chelsea Football Club is. I don't know if the gentleman loves football, but for sure he would love to feel that the miserable people that had this (inter)action with him are not Chelsea Football Club. This is not Chelsea. They are not Chelsea.

"Chelsea is the owner, the board, the manager, the players, is the people that works here, is the true Chelsea supporter. Yes, I would support the idea (of Souleymane coming to a match), even not knowing whether the gentleman loves football or not."

ASHAMED

"You don't need words to know what our club is. What our club defends. We feel ashamed, but maybe we shouldn't. I refuse to be connected with these people. I am connected with Chelsea and so many good things the club defends and represents."

He said that he had watched the video of the incident only once. "It is enough for me, it is sad enough for me. It is a humiliation for that gentleman. I imagine myself in that same situation. I want to go home after a day of work and a couple of guys kick me out of my public transport. And I cannot go home. " (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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