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'Shocked' FA to question playing ties in Serbia

THE English Football Association has questioned whether they will play matches in Serbia again following the alleged racist abuse of the England Under-21 side.

FA general secretary Alex Horne also urged UEFA to take the strongest action against the Serbian FA.

UEFA last night announced charges against both the Serbian FA and the English for improper conduct of their players, and against the Serbs for "alleged racist chanting" by fans.

Tottenham defender Danny Rose, on loan at Sunderland, was the target of racist chanting during the match, clearly audible on TV coverage, but the Serbian FA issued a statement "absolutely" denying any racism at all and branding the England player's behaviour "vulgar".

The FA has sent UEFA a full dossier of evidence, including video footage and a catalogue of incidents which they reported to match officials.

As well as players being hit by missiles, there were numerous monkey chants and at the final whistle there were violent scenes directed at England players and coaching staff by the Serbian squad and technical staff.

Horne said in a statement: "We were shocked and appalled by the disgraceful events that occurred in Serbia. Our players and staff were subjected to racial abuse (and) violence as well as missiles being thrown at them.

"FA officials made UEFA officials aware of racist abuse from sections of the crowd aimed at a number of England's black players at half-time. We must question the validity of sending a team to Serbia in the future."

The cases will be dealt with by UEFA's control and disciplinary body on November 22.


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