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Neil Warnock Urges More Action Against Football’s Hate Brigade

Neil Warnock has called for tougher bans and government-backed action to deal with abusive behaviour at football matches.

The Cardiff City manager – who takes his resurgent team to Watford on Saturday – has spoken of his revulsion at the general level of “hatred” at some matches and says he has often been a target himself.

Warnock’s demand for change comes after a week of debate and soul-searching within the game following the abuse Raheem Sterling suffered at Stamford Bridge.

Earlier this week, Chelsea suspended four supporters from attending matches pending investigations into alleged racist abuse of Sterling, and Warnock wants the strongest possible action to be taken to stop similar incidents happening.

The Cardiff boss hailed the way Sterling handled the situation, but wants the government to step in and deal with abusive fans who attend matches.

He said: “Raheem handled it in the best possible way by becoming the best player in the country – that’s the best way to handle it.

“It’s horrible when you just have to smile, like me as a manager when I get abused and criticised, you see the contorted look on their faces and I just laugh it off because I can’t do anything else.

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“He [Sterling] had some stick in the past and I was concerned with the abuse he got playing for England that was really out of order.

“There is going to have to be action taken from higher up. I’d love to see the government appoint a mobile unit to go to certain games and if anything happens just go in and sort it out.

“Stewards are not cut out to go into a pack of grown men with hatred and eject them. It needs a proper law.

“I’ve had it where the hatred has come through to me as a manager, I’ve reported it to stewards to remove people.

“These people are so vitriolic, they go to matches for it.

“I remember going to a game and fans in the stand not even watching the game with the hatred just coming through.

“They are people who just go for that type of thing and people alongside them are not strong enough, stewards are not strong enough, or brave enough, because they don’t get paid enough.

“If anyone does get caught, and we have good CCTV these days, then they should be banned for life.”


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