Millwall "shocked and appalled" by footage of racist abuse

© Edmund Boyden
© Edmund Boyden

MILLWALL have been left "shocked and appalled" by hidden-camera footage showing racist abuse at The Den this season, the club has said in a statement.

A three-month investigation by Sky Sports News culminated in the broadcast of a special report on Monday night that identified five individuals shouting abuse at home matches.

The club statement read: "Everyone at Millwall Football Club is deeply shocked and appalled by the footage shown on Sky Sports News on Monday evening.

"As a club Millwall has been at the forefront of the battle to eradicate racism from football, being the first in the country to introduce an Anti-Racism Trust.

"In spite of the incidents shown in this programme, tremendous strides have been made."

"However, it is a sad fact that a small minority of people in society still hold racist views and some individuals bring them into football stadiums throughout the country.

"We firmly believe that football itself is not the problem, but rather football is committed to being part of the solution.

"At Millwall we operate a zero tolerance policy in which we target, arrest and ban any fan identified displaying racist or abusive behaviour."

The programme featured footage filmed at the Lions' home match against Leeds in November, after which there had been reports that El Hadji Diouf had been racially abused.

The statement continued: "We became aware of allegations made initially via Twitter which were picked up elsewhere within minutes of the match ending.

"We immediately launched an investigation but there were no reports from officials, police, stewards or media at the ground to substantiate the allegations at the time.

"We spoke in person to the player in question and asked him if he was aware of being subjected to any racial abuse.

"He told us this had not been the case and, on that basis, we therefore had nothing to substantiate allegations of racial abuse and thus refuted them.

"Now that this new evidence has come to light, Millwall has requested that Sky make all footage available to the police, which they have agreed to do.

"We will assist in identifying the individuals concerned with a view to the strongest possible action being taken."

Staff

(@NewsAtDen)

27 thoughts on “Millwall "shocked and appalled" by footage of racist abuse

  • February 11, 2013 at 21:02
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    Whilst I personally find this kind of behaviour inexcusable, I question the motives of Sky Sport in conducting this 'secret' investigation at The Den and question whether they would have 'uncovered' anything different at any other football ground??? Unfortunately, racism is a problem in society and not exclusive to football or Millwall. We're certainly not a racist club, our last two fans player of the season have been black!!!!! 5 people out of ten thousand yet we all get tarred with the same brush. Yet another step backward for the club. Sad.

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  • February 11, 2013 at 21:07
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    It's a sad fact that this still goes on. In my early days of supporting the Lions we heard it all the time,but while it has lessend over the years, sitting in my seat I still hear rascist comments,not particularly shouted out but said amongst friends, and it still pains me. This is not anything a football can do, attitudes and behaviour in our society must take blame. Being football fans, we sometimes use the occasion to get rid of some pent up rage within us, this also brings out other views aswell. I am sorry as a Millwall fan to have players to have to put up with this, but the so called authorities should look all over the country before punishing football.

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  • February 11, 2013 at 21:49
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    Same old story, we are an easy target. The TWO morons featured should be banned for life. However, if this footage had been passed to the police in October and November, after the games in question, the authorities and the club would have dealt with the problem swiftly.
    Sensationalist news coverage with no sense of perspective is to be expected from Sky and there are enough idiots in every ground to give them the footage they need, but they are well aware that having Millwall as the focus of their report gives it more weight thanks to our reputation and history.
    Black footballers are idolised by millions in England and this applies to our club as well from Walker and Lee in the 70's, Fash and Lawrence in the 80's, Witter, Warner, Ifill, Reid in the 90's and 00's and through to the present day as per Adys77777 comment above. Yet, there are still a few idiots who racially abuse our own players when they have a bad game.
    These individuals are morons, but they are reflection on society as a whole as opposed to Millwall F.C. or the wider football family.

    Well played Andy Ambler, a dignified and reasoned response under difficult circumstances.

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    • February 11, 2013 at 22:00
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      Trouble is Lion.ie they're such morons they probably don't make the equation between their actions and the fact that we've got black players playing for the club, they are probably chanting Shittu in the next breath!!!!! But you're right, it reflects on society and themselves as individuals, unfortunately it has repercussions for us as a club. No wonder the best kids of non-European heritage choose other local clubs over Millwall whilst this image continues.

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  • February 11, 2013 at 23:16
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    Can I borrow that vest from balotelli
    "Why always me".
    well I didn't see that one coming, so we can expect the fa to bring forward proceedings of Bottlegate as well then. What a crock of s***. As sneaky and snide as sky tv are you cannot be doing that in 20 f****** 13. So what's to happen to these guys ? The club will issue a ban for life from the den and the fa will give a ban for life from all other grounds, possible jail sentence and huge fines and costs as well as no future job prospects and a hell of a hard time from black people who will remember their faces all of which you couldn't argue with but what the f*** did the fa, Chelsea fc, the police, abramovic, and the judge and jury do to John terry ? That c*** swans around like butter wouldn't melt cause he knows he's got away with murder, I do not condone it for one minute and the evidence is there for all to see but why do we always have stupid people putting us in this position and why do they make us the scapegoat for society. I thought we was turning a corner on this subject marvin Eliot said he was glad to leave millwall and didn't sign a new contract cause of the abuse he received.in the 80s we had Laurence as lion.ie mentions but we actually called him chicken George you just couldn't get away with it these days John Barnes in the facup game at old den got loads of abuse as well as bananas thrown at him, fair play to him he actually picked one up and ate it.
    I hope sky and those guilty are really proud of themselves for putting millwall OUT THERE again. Cheers, so now when my 4 yr old boy goes to his football lessons tomorrow afternoon in his 1st millwall kit he can expect shity comments from the other parents and some of the other kids. Unlucky you mindless c**** you so nearly stopped him from coming down the den next season, it will take much more than that to stop us from coming down there mugs but I'm now getting it in the f****** ear hole from her in doors. TWATS

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  • February 11, 2013 at 23:25
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    You think you've got it bad - my missus is mixed race! Truth be told, I've taken my boy down The Den since he was little, he's Millwall thru and thru!!!

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  • February 11, 2013 at 23:44
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    Good stuff but she knows how it really is ads.
    Theirs a black guy who works in marketing down the den I can't remember his name I was drinking with him in the Walpole in new cross about 18 month ago he was telling me about the sun news paper article on us a couple seasons ago and that he went and sat in different areas of the ground to see how accurate they were and after a couple months of investigating he went back to the sun to tell em how wrong they was, could you ever imagine a black person doing that for millwall 20 yrs ago, the black kids in school used to give me loads of grief for it. It's a shame ads a big big shame that's the last thing we need, our season has just got 10 times harder kiss good by the mid table finish with no dramas and I don't even want to think about losing at Luton on Saturday, that would be the icing on the cake

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    • February 11, 2013 at 23:54
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      Ray James is the guy who runs the Commercial side down The Den. Nice guy. My son is obviously very light skinned but you can see he's got colour in him, he's 18 now and I've been taking him since he was about 5 years old. Honestly in all that time, there's only been one occasion where I had to tell someone to shut up cos I found his comments offensive. Might also help now that my son is 6'3" and built like a proverbial. Lol - I took his photo with Shittu two weeks ago and he's the same size!!!!!! Shittu couldn't believe he was 18!!!! Millwall, like society is moving forward but there's still some p***** about.

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      • February 12, 2013 at 00:33
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        Lol I'm almost dumbfounded ads but I'd be as big a liar as they are bigots if I said " it doesn't happen" or "not at my club" I think we're in the s*** this time cause of what's happened this season elsewhere. Society needs p***** just so we can teach our kids right from wrong but it should never come at a cost to a business or family or a group or club it's wrong and to punish so many innocent people is not the way forward. it'll be interesting to see if JT was visiting schools to speak about racism in society, and how well millwall are doing with the community scheme.we had a fantastic scheme under Gary stemple and Ron Bell in the late 80s early 90s they done a lot of work to give the club a better name.
        It never rains. Or as me dad would say
        "I see no ships, only hard ships".

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  • February 11, 2013 at 23:54
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    I wonder how many times Sky visited The Den in order to obtain the evidence they so badly wanted? There were three home games between The Bolton and Leeds fixtures and I wouldn't mind betting they went to each of them and came back empty handed. They mentioned at least two other visits where there was nothing to report - so why did they feel the need to keep coming back? If those games where nothing happened were between other clubs, would they have returned to 'try again' at the next home game? Of course not. There is a clear agenda here.

    Furthermore, the match they got the footage from was a traditionally fierce fixture against Leeds, who happened to have one of the most disliked players in the country playing for them. Now, I am in NO WAY condoning any of the vile behaviour of those individuals, but what's the betting Diouf would attract the same treatment from an equally small section of rival Huddersfield, Sheff Weds, or (dare I say it) Man Utd fans? It is simply not accurate for Sky to imply that this sort of thing doesn't happen with the same frequency at other clubs because no such behaviour was reported at some other tame midweek clash between two teams with no history.

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  • February 12, 2013 at 07:36
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    No matter what Millwall do or the supporters i for one like many supporters i know DO NOT supporter racist remarks or comments so has soon as we fart or sneeze differantly there is sky news,the sun or any other newspaper ready to jump on our backs.They need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture and see that we are not the only club with a few morons i can name a few other football clubs that do it and get away with it.
    So how long or how many times did sky come to the den to film this and then get out that great big paint brush and paint us all with it,So come on what are the F.A going to do now,what with this and bottlegate this season can not get any better can it ?

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  • February 12, 2013 at 08:17
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    http://www.goal.com/en-gb/news/2896/premier-league/2013/02/11/3744540/-

    Take a look at this story, coming from Sordell.

    I believe Sordell and Goal.Com should be sued by Millwall for allowing this article to be released.

    We understand Marvin Sordell was absued at Millwall but this was in no shape or form racist, there is also no evidence he was racially abused and a child of no older than 12 was given a ban because of the abuse he aimed at Sordell but this was NOT racial and this was proven.

    Anyone who writes articles like these should have legal proceedings brought against them!!!

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  • February 12, 2013 at 09:19
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    As much as I think he make s a great pantomime villain, I have to admit that Diouf comes out of this with some credit. He clearly has not jumped on the band waggon and supported claims that were made which he did not actually hear. Never thought I'd find myself saying that!

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  • February 12, 2013 at 09:57
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    Just seen this report on sky bellow
    The investigation visited the home of Leeds United and Birmingham, but did not hear abuse. Blackburn striker Colin Kazim-Richards suffered abuse at Burnley, but a further visit to the Den in London on 18 November encountered racism the programme's cameraman described as the worst he had seen in 35 years.

    There were 56 separate incidents of racial abuse by five white men, with Leeds striker El-Hadji Diouf the subject of most of the chants by a small section of Millwall supporters. FIFA president Sepp Blatter was shown the footage and later called for clubs to be relegated if players were found to be racially abused.

    Millwall did not follow up the incident with Diouf claiming he hadn't been abused, but after being shown the footage, the club's chief executive Andy Ambler said their investigation would be reopened.
    What a crock those wallys have just handed a massive lifeline to Blatter, god, how simple was that ? he done f*** all on the high profile incidents - u21s, Suarez and terry although Ferdinand has now joined besiktas after being racially abused by a fellow footballer,you can imagine the reception he'll receive against fenerbache or galatasari - he probably paid the sky reporter to do the dirty for him, he had the whole of England on his case to do something about it and we've just gave it to him do cheaply. The repocussions could last a long time, lets go back over recent posts on this site, people moaning that fans don't turn up anymore or we're not the family club like cafc ect ect. Well after this why would some of them want to ? people turn up and pay the club hard earned money so they can put a team out each week - forget the talk of how the team is doing right now, we're on a different subject - the loans and unwanted is what we'll now end up with for the foreseeable future. Cheers for that.

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    • February 12, 2013 at 10:32
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      I like that from Sky Sports, only briefly mention Colin Kazim-Richards being racially abused and then move straight onto Millwall.... typical media

      I'm not saying Millwall shouldn't be investigated, because I absolutely agree that no player should be the subject of racist abuse. I just don't agree with the media using Millwall as a 'scapegoat' and a club which they focus all their time on.

      I'm sorry but when do you ever hear good things about Millwall and what we do in the community and especially our work with Racism.... NEVER!!! As fans we know how hard Millwall work in the community but how often do the rest of the footballing world, media, press officers hear about it and actually report it....

      We know this sort of abuse has to stop, but the media clearly have an agenda to make sure ALL Millwall fans are to blame for this.

      I respect El-Hadji Diouf for admitting he heard no racist abuse, because he actually didn't not because there wasn't any.

      Let me know your thoughts on this???

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  • February 12, 2013 at 10:59
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    Looking at last nights report, I noticed that when racial anise was seen/heard it was at games such as Leeds. Now it may just be me that thinks this but isn't games like the Leeds games where all the 'armchair' supporters come out of the woodwork?

    Don't get me wrong I do hear some regulars talking amongst themselves and you may hear a little racial 'dig' so to speak. But IMO it seems those that shout it out loud seem to be the 'armchair' supporters who you'll also find are drunk as a skunk, possibly drugged up, and are only there incase of a 'kick off'.

    You may say I am wrong in targeting these fans, but I feel if like me you are a season ticket holder and are a passionate fan of the club, you would know, understand and respect the fact that racial abuse, bottle throwing, pitch invasions etc do nothing but give the club a bad name and cost us in fines. This in turn causes things such as wages and transfer fees to be cut, answering the question as to why Millwall never break the bank for a player!

    IMO 9-10,000 a week is very poor! But I'd rather 9-10,000 die hard fans who are there for the football and not there to cause trouble!

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  • February 12, 2013 at 12:03
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    Well said Frankie. IMO this has nothing to do with peoples politics or (strange as it sounds) peoples views on race, it is just mindless, ignorant behaviour. I'm no saint but against Villa, there were loads of new faces p***** up and coked off their tits.

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  • February 12, 2013 at 12:03
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    Shocking persecution as usual – this will set us back years.

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  • February 12, 2013 at 12:14
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    Adsy77777 I doubt any of us on here are saints. I know full well I shout and swear at football, but its at football where alot of men and women get their anger and passion out. But I draw the line at things such as racial abuse, bottle/coin throwing, things like that are what cripples this club. Some fans (minority of fans) drag this club through the mud, and its us true fans who have to deal with all the s***!

    What got to me last night though is they showed racial abuse at Millwall and made a big story out of it, fair play. But the sort of things they heard at Millwall was also heard at the likes of Burnley, but nothing was made of it. What people need to understand is that racism is part of football unfortunately, and i believe it will never die down, but its not just from 1 set of fans. Everybody in some way, shape or form, is or has been racial towards someone/somebody else in their life time, so why is it just Millwall that is picked on?

    The simple answer to that is the bone headed so called fans that only turn out for big games at Millwall give the rest of the footballing world and the media a chance to bring our wonderful club down once again!

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    • February 12, 2013 at 13:51
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      No doubt it was a proper hatchet job on an easy target - I'm sure if they'd have carried out their 'undercover' report at the rugby last weekend they would have found something to fill the space!!! Made me laugh a few years ago when burnley fan, Alastair Campbell slagged us off for being racist - er, excuse me, the town has a history of returning BNP candidates to office - none of them go to football in the town!!!!! People are ALL entitled to their views but if they behaved in such a way on public transport, in a pub or on a high street, they'd be arrested. People are entitled to vote in any way they see fit - behaving like that in a public space is unacceptable to most of us, as I hope in this day and age is racism!!!

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  • February 12, 2013 at 12:15
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    Hmmm the footage is damning but to be honest the video I saw had everything bleeped out... So honestly I have no idea what was being said but I have to question skysports motive here... Everyone I talk to about the subject isn't bothered and most are bored of this racism all over the tabloids! It's wrong and by all means ban the individuals but the whole "special report" is ultimately pointless! We're such an easy target for this and I agree they probably went to numerous games at great expense just to film some crack head shouting a load of b*******.... Yeah well done skysports

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  • February 12, 2013 at 12:31
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    Enough about racism, anyone want to congratulate Aiden O'Brien on securing a loan move to Crawley Town until the end of the season???

    I suppose racism is all we are going to hear for the next 4 months.

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    • February 12, 2013 at 15:18
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      it will do him good and hopefully learn a fews things well done aiden

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  • February 13, 2013 at 07:20
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    While i do condemn racism, should we not be looking at every premiership club including spurs. All teams who play spurs shout abuse wiyh reference to the jewish community, also there own fans chanting Yido, when i was young being called a yid was claimed to be abusive, maybe the world has changed and that the word yid is now acceptable. I am also fed up with Millwall being tarred with the same brush and the big clubs getting away with their racist chants. I would also like to say that i am proud to be British, and after serving in wars for my country i get really p***** off that midless muslims abused our army lads when they returned home from tour, all they got was a slap on the wrist. My comments are not aimed at Millwall as i have loved them all my life and not just football rasicm, but at poxy Sky and our sopposedly no-bias police force. If there is going to be a rule for football kick out rasicm this should apply across the board to all communities who wish to live in this country.

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