22 Oct 2012

Keep your nose out! LFC legend blasts Alex Ferguson for 'bemusing' rant...

Liverpool legend Alan Hansen has criticised Sir Alex Ferguson for sticking his nose into the Jazon Roberts anti-racism affair, and he's warned that the Manchester United manager's battle with Rio Ferdinand is 'a fight he can't win'.

Last week, Roberts insisted that he would refuse to wear a 'Kick it Out' T-shirt, claiming that people felt 'let down' by the organisation 'after what happened in the last year.

Ferguson then stuck his oar in, accusing Roberts of putting himself on a 'different pedestal' to everyone else, and insidiously suggesting that the Reading striker was somehow betraying his team-mates by not wearing the T-shirt.

I totally agree with Roberts' stance; why should he wear a T-shirt to support an organisation that has basically done nothing of note to fight racism in the modern game? Since Kick it Out was launched, what has changed? NOTHING. The only thing that *has* changed is its name, which mysteriously went from 'Let's Kick Racism Out of Football', to simply 'Kick it Out'.

In his column for The Telegraph, Reds legend Alan Hansen blasted Ferguson for sticking his nose into the situation, and questioned why United's manager felt the need to publicly condemn Rio Ferdinand for following Roberts' example. He said:

"Why did he [Ferguson] feel it necessary to criticise Jason Roberts’s comments on the Kick It Out campaign? What did that have to do with Ferguson or United?

"By then saying Ferdinand ‘will be dealt with’ he has again left himself open to ccriticism, forcing himself into a corner from which it is not easy to escape.

"I’m bemused as to why he allowed himself to become embroiled in this. Ferguson who should reconsider his stance. He’ll find little support within football for criticising Ferdinand on this".

As is usually the case, Ferguson thinks he can do and say whatever he wants, and people will just fall into line. However, in my view, he's completely misjudged the public mood on this issue, and after the Luis Suarez/John Terry debacles over the last year, I'm sure a lot of people are equally dissatisfied with the lack of real action to tackle racism in the game.

Indeed, only last week, UEFA fined Lazio just 32K for racist monkey chants directed at Tottenham's players last month. What kind of a deterrent is that?! It's pathetic, and another sad indictment of football's abject failure to take proper action.

With a spineless organisation like UEFA in charge of European football, there's no hope for a meaningful challenge against racism, and the hollow gesture of wearing T-shirts is not going to change anything.

I never thought I'd say this, but Bravo, Rio!

On the subject of 'Kick it Out' - For me, here are a couple examples of things they should be doing:

* Publicly challenging UEFA every time it dishes out a pathetic punishment on racism. Where is KIO's statement criticising Lazio's paltry 32k fine? issuing a press release costs NOTHING, and raises public awareness of UEFA's incompetence.

* Publicly challenging John Terry's 4 match ban by the FA. KIO should be arguing that Terry's ban is not long enough, especially considering the fact Luis Suarez got twice as long.

KIO never seems to take an adversarial stance, and that is its undoing IMO. It needs to start ruffling feathers and actively challenging the FA/UEFA, and until it does, KIO will continue to be a lame duck.

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. Things like this just show how out of touch UEFA and the FA are with reality. They really seem to have no clue sometimes.
    Example. Hundreds of Serbian fans start monkey chants aimed at England players, Danny Rose, quite rightly gets p!ssed off by it, and kicks the ball at the crowd... Ref sends Rose off? and UEFA charge England? First thing I would do as a Ref, is get the players off the pitch.
    Its like the police breaking up a fight, where one guy is beating another up, and the guy getting beaten up then gets punched by the police. Its just backwards. Refs dont know how to deal with these situations.

    I think fair play to Roberts, this "kick it out" thing clearly hasnt done anything, and if Rio feels the same then he should be allowed to voice his opinion.

    Whilst all this goes on, what do the FA do, the make a policy where players cant tweet before a game??!! WTF!!! is it because they are worried someone might call them names again...

  2. Done nothing? The fact that people are now being more vocal about racial incidents is because of KIO. The fact that racism is now a big talking point is because of KIO.

    KIO is a small organisation with no powers and on a little budget. I think it;s unfair that everyone is expecting this small campaign to clean up a problem which is not just isolated to football, but to society in general.

    If Rio and the other players who boycotted are so annoyed by the 'lack of action' from KIO, I suggest they set up their own organisation and pump their own money into fighting this.

    For once - I agree with Fergie. This small campaign needs support of the players but more importantly from the authorities.

    I can understand the frustration of the black players but they are targetting the wrong people.

  3. Jimmysquarefoot. Whilst some of the points you make may seem okay. the is a big BUT, why is Fergie talking about another player, he is a Reading player and should keep his nose out of it, he can I suppose have a say in what Rio did but that's about it (but Rio is his own man and you cannot force a player to wear a t-shirt if he doesn't want to, unless it is part of a contract he had signed, which I doubt very much it is).

    But the fact remains that by not wearing the shirts this has brought everything to the forefront and maybe, just maybe this is what KIO needed and they should use this momentum, that they now have on a plate, to push the FA, particularly whilst the media hype is there to be had. Good on you Jamie for highlighting this and for a change I am with you on this one.

  4. Fair point - going off tangent slightly, you could argue about the handshake between Suarez and Evra? Suarez had been convicted and served his punishment. Should he be forced to shake someone's hand? And we remember what happened after lol.

    I agree about the boycott has brought more attention on the campaign and the fight against racism however I feel sorry for KIO who are not to blame. This boycott makes KIO look imcompetent which is far from the case.

  5. once again off the topic, but where can i find stats for miles ran vs reading?

  6. Hahahaha.....Proven now !!! Which players and clubs are racim we can see now.No need to search or investigate more.

  7. Imagine, if you will, that the Suarez-Evra and Terry-Ferdinand incidents had never happened. It's probably fair to suggest that we wouldn't be having this conversation today. The Danny Rose problem last week would have been in the news, but as it was merely an U-21s game that lacked any real high profile, it would probably have been overlooked in favour of what happened to Chris Kirkland on Friday night.

    For me, the Serbia incident and the Kirkland incident are massively more concerning than what happened in the Suarez and Terry cases. But for the ugliest of inane reasons, we're force-fed absolute bollocks about a few players refusing to wear f**king teeshirts?! Seriously??!

    I personally find it very sad (but not at all surprising) that it's come to this, but as I've always said on this site since the Suarez incident first really developed - it's always been more about opportunism by anti-racism groups; and politics by clubs, the Premier League and the FA; than about 'tackling racism issues'.

    'Kick It Out' is trying to achieve a total cleansing of all forms of racism at football grounds. I would argue that, on the whole, it's an impossible situation to govern because you can't guarantee that one individual knobend isn't going to say or do something stupid. I'd also suggest that they're trying to achieve this state of non-racism in an environment that has vastly improved over the last 2 decades. Apparently we're not allowed to say that there is no racism problem at English football grounds anymore, but (and I can only speak from personal experience here) I can't remember the last time I heard a racist comment - certainly one that was supported or went unpunished by the adjacent football fans in the crowd.

    Granted, I've been lucky to avoid these ugly incidents. I have, however, heard seriously ugly things shouted at football grounds. If I didn't fear an absolute barrage of "YOU'RE A RACIST!"-style criticism, I'd nearly go so far as to say that some of the things I've heard shouted by people in the crowd at football matches is much worse than "you black c**t", but sadly, I'm evidently not in a position to have this opinion because we're kind of not allowed to say THAT either.

    Is 75,000 people shouting "Sit down you paedophile!" at Arsene Wenger allowable purely because these idiots aren't mentioning his skin colour, his religion, or his country of origin? And if so, then what about the people who shout anti-semitic bollocks at Spurs fans? Or the abuse Adebayor gets from opposing fans purely because he's from Togo and he wasn't shot on the bus during the ANC in Angola in 2010?

    The reason UEFA aren't more aggressive on this issue is because they actually see it as something that, in the majority case, only upsets British sensibilities - they see it as a British over-reaction.

    And as long as the anti-racism groups are mainly only acknowledging the concerns of one ethnicity, and not even attempting to educate the others on what is allowable and what is offensive, then this problem will be ineptly-addressed, politically-manipulated, and mind-numbingly f**king pointless.

  8. Exactly.

    The Kick it Out campaign allows little or nothing to be done about the racism that still exists because hey, we wore the t shirts, what more do you want? is allowed to be considered enough. Why drop the word Racism from an anti Racism campaign? that's like having a save the whale campaign that's call 'Save them'. Counterproductive.

    UEFA think it's twice as bad to show a non sanctioned sponsor on your underpants than hundreds of people making monkey nises every time a black player touches the ball. That's why it needs to be shown that more has to be done. Bentner was fined 80,000 euros, Lazio 32,000. Serbia (last time) just 16,000. Joke.

    I wish Rose hadn't kicked that ball into the crowd, since it let UEFA off the hook allowing them to investigate England as well as Serbia. I know he was provoked, but it would have been harder for them to say both sides contributed, and harder for Serbia to shift the blame. Oh well.

    As for Ferguson, what a joke saying Roberts is putting himself on a different pedestal... Exactly what he himself has been doing for years ( eg I'm not doing post game interviews if we lose, or talking to the BBC)

    Bet Platini doesn't follow through on his promise to ban Serbia though. Let's see....

  9. Ahh but Suarez was never convicted of racism by the FA or anyone else, in fact even Evra stated Suarez was not a racist, the man's Grandfather is black for starters and if you look at the way Suarez ran to Sterling and hugged the boy this weekend, you can tell he is far from racist. I know you are not stating he is, just pointing out he actually wasn't convicted of racism directly.
    I agree that he should never have been forced to do that and this whole had shake business is daft anyway in my opinion. But it wasn't KD who forced him it was the owners so slightly different to Fergie's situation

  10. how do you work out that black players are targetting the wrong people when the head of kick it out said ok john terry got four match ban but its time we forget it and move on.

  11. you think they are not incompedent take it you never needed them but not big enough for the papers they dont give a shit unless it makes them money.i phoned the other day to ask why they have double standards and they hung up on me

  12. I find it funny that people actually think that wearing T shirts with " Kick it out" logos on them has any effect on football or on life in general! FIFA, UEFA, FA and KIO are spinesless (thanks Jamie) and are not concerned it this at all. But then again footballs just mirrors what happens in society.

    Also fining a club for the behavior of its supporters is not the course to follow although I can't see another way. Identifying individuals and giving them criminal records, fines, bans and even prison time is the way forward but that in itself requires that the clubs take racism seriously.

    Ferguson should focus on his team and his players. Players are obliged to wear KIO shirts. And if Ferguson, say, fines Rio for this then Rio should challenge that decision.

    Also this business of shaking hands before a match ( as if that promotes a clean game) is once again fo**ish.

    Trust me when I say that there will be no further forward regarding this... KIO is a joke and so are the footballing governing bodies.

    Rant over.

    That is all.


  13. once again off the topic, but where can i find stats for miles ran vs reading? please...

  14. Agree with every single point mate.

    Unfortunately, this will always exist.

  15. I can understand your point Sir, but... wearing Tshirts does absolutely nothing. KIO have contributed to *ahem* awareness but if they were really serious they would use the media to strongly condemn certain incidents that have happened.

    But I agree with you that footballers are targeting the wrong organization, it should be the FA, UEFA and FIFA they should be pressurizing.

  16. We all know that Purpled nose tosser sticks his nose where he shouldn't. He's being doing that for years and get away with it. When legendary Benitez stated facts about him the press were quick to call it Rafa's Rant. I wonder what they going to call it now that Brit had the guts to criticize the old pensioner.

  17. I find all too convenient that people are failing to mention (or choosing to forget) that Rio Ferdinand himself was found guilty and “punished” for making a remark in a way which was improper and/or brought the game into disrepute by making comments which included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race. I find it really ironic that he has taken the stance he has, after all his punishment was, in my opinion too lenient. So does this mean he is protesting that his own punishment wasn’t enough? Ok his wasn't on the pitch and was on Twitter (like Carlton Cole’s “joke” after the England versus Ghana game last year) but should that really matter if we all want zero tolerance on racism?


  19. Very well constructed comment. I feel that we need to take a stand on more than racism. You cant condemn one thing and then allow something else.

    Its a never ending story.

  20. I'm no "racist" but I am sick and tired of every colored folk moaning about "racism" if they dont like what they hear, if a color said "racism" to a white no-one would blink an eyelash but so-called "racism" to colored and it is somehow a massive crime, I am getting sick of the nancy a## s**t in this world and I am sick of nancy a## pu**ies crying about it,mean up. You get it with "racism" and people crying about "religion", people moan/hate different sexuality, its pathetic, people are different, we believe in different s**t, we act in different ways and we all have the damn rights to do so without some one objecting all becuase they can not handle it. Now I am a hetrosexual white man who does not believe in religion, I love sports, money, women, yes I am a bit of an egotist with an attitude and I have the rights to act the way I want and say what I want without people crying about and so does everyone else, so why do colored people cry about "racism" every time they suffer something they simply can not handle. GROW UP.

  21. Pity that you can't look at the bigger issue like other people have already, i.e. racism, instead resort to the usual childish tirade of anything remotely anti-LFC.

  22. to be honest i dont give a dam but suarez 8 terry 4 that really dose stink think the fa have been predujist with there judgement

  23. All apparently because of the no. of times it was said. Which I find a silly reason.

  24. Ferguson was backing up KIO, albeit in a insensitive manner. I understand where he is coming from but could have made a general remark on racism/KIO, instead of specifically highlighting Roberts even if Roberts was the initial catalyst for KIO being brought into the spotlight. Definitely agree to a extent with his defending of KIO.

  25. Colored folk... First of its spelt coloured... Are you still living in the 70's? Just by using that term says it all for you. You might as well go all the way and use the "N" word.

  26. rednose , paint , corner , . END OF

  27. real change must come at all levels. UEFA and the FA should instead of banning the player from gamesand charging clubs, must route out the fans and fine the players and when i say fine the players, i mean take at least 50% of their wages for about 6 months. Fans should get an immediate ban from all games for 2 years. If a club is not proactively trying to sort out its fans then the club will come into it and be banned from competitions and docked points, no fines just removal and point deduction, it will hurt them in the pocket and on the field.

    lastly players instead of going against an organisation, they should really be saying ' i have a big high profile, can i help' i will volunteer to do adverts, promotions etc. If the biggest stars contantly backed it and there was harsh punishment for fans, players and clubs, then it would be erradicated. at the end of the day, the only thing that stops any crime is ultimately the punishment given.

  28. I perfectly agree with what you wrote in the third paragraph and in the paragraph before the last.

    My observation of the British media is that it likes to appear holier than pope and whiter than white. In the UK, Tabloids sell much more than the serious newspapers and a common critique from international media analysts is that for most UK people, information from tabloids is enough. Other E.U. countries (to restrict the context of my critique) differentiate between tabloid news material and newspaper news material. However, since most noise coming from Britain is made by these tabloids, UEFA and FIFA overlook them as nothing serious. The BBC is a very good and respected media source, but generally it prefers to take a non-committal stance over these issues. This means that no pressure is made on institutions such as Fifa and Uefa.

    Trying to eliminate racism from the footballing pitch is useless is we first do not eliminate it from our lives. This is not an easy thing to do, especially since evolutionary psychologists calculate that our current genetic make-up is still 15,000 years old. 15,000 years is nothing considering the history of biological evolution, but it is a lot for human civilization times since it's a thing of a few thousand years rather than hundred of thousands of years.

    15,000 years ago, we relied on our 'racist' genetic make up to recognize our kin and discriminate the in-group from the out-group, thereby ensuring the survival of our race. Since then, our genes have not changed much, but the times we live in have changed a lot.

    Now try to fit our 'out-dated' genetic make-up in the globalized world we live in today and you will soon understand why racism is hard to eliminate.

    When talking about racism, one must also remember that the rather ruthless capitalist world that we live in thrives on differences to generate money. Racial difference is one way by which the economy discriminates.

    You hit the nail on its head when you said that we need to educate people. However, with most of the education system being academically based, do not expect change any time soon. It is well known in education circles that when the Governments have to decide how money in education is going to be used, it's the say of professors in economics, not professors in education which counts. And then we wonder why nothing changed...

  29. your missing the point fella as hanson is infaring KIO may be a little organisation but it should not stop them harrassing uefa and fifa over racisim and the recent fines and punishments delt out ferguson is pathetic he started the race row with suarez it was him that insisted on his player making a complaint about suarez and now he wants black footballers who can see nothing is really being achived by the KIO campaign and have decided not to wear a t shirt which obviously dosent work 32 k fine to for monkey chants is disgusting as is the chants that just somes up why Mr Roberts and the ferdinand brothers should not wear the tshirt by the way you wouldnt be a man u fan would you

  30. i agree with mark hugues, you will never stop racism... how can you there will allways be idiots...who will not stop...its just not football its everywere....you can only try...thats what there doing...raceism is every were ...not just coulor but relgion...too.....will it ever end completly...no..

  31. Oh how annoying and stupid a comment is that last bit. Even threads like this where a important issue is being discussed (racism), one sees childish rivalry-based comments like 'you wouldn't be a man u fan would you'. So a person doesn't toe the anti-Manure/Ferguson line and is automatically accused of possibly being a Man U fan. Zzzz.

  32. In his defence, Joe, I imagine he was loathe to say "black" because that can apparently get you into trouble now....

    That's why everyone is treading on egg shells.

  33. Sorry everyone. I hate Ferguson, but for the first time in my life I actually agreed with him.
    Players like Roberts and Ferdinand are getting bolshy, but Kick it Out do not hand out the fines or bans - the FA, UEFA and FIFA are supposed to do that.
    If they feel that strongly they should make an articulate argument as to why the governing bodies should be taking a more pro-active stance. Ooops, sorry, Rio might struggle with this one...

    All they did by refusing to wear the T-shirt was marginalise themselves, which is surely what they are fighting against?

  34. I was supposed to add that 'Kick it Out' can only raise awareness, which is what they are surely doing?

  35. see whiskey nose has now back tracked.what a shithouse and the drugs cheat wins

  36. The only way racism will be taken seriously in football, is when the FA and UEFA start to lose money because of it. Why don't they ban teams with racist fans, because they are earning a lot money from these teams which would put a dent in the profits. It is, really that simple.

    The punishment of Suarez was trying to show that the FA took the matter seriously, the punishment of JT, was "we made are point last time, we don't need to to it again" Also how can some old rich white men, who probably have never faced racism in there lives, understand how it feels to be abused while only doing the job you get paid to do. in any other profession it would be dealt with in a more robust fashion. The fact is there will always be racist, you will never get rid of them, the best you can do is prevent them from expressing there views in the wrong way in the wrong place.

  37. Why don't these players, if they feel that strongly, do something rebellious against the governing bodies such as UEFA/FA, rather than just going for some small passive charity like KIO. KIO are somewhat possibly handicapped as they are partially & heavily funded by the FA (e.g. the KIO homophobia video by Ogilvy was pulled by the FA, such is their influence on KIO). Just because KIO is the main/famous anti-racism charity in UK football, doesn't mean it has the cojones to take on what these players want them to do. They are a charity who have a mere (roughly) £500k funding, in a industry that is worth billions. Why don't these players put more money into the pot for KIO. As a small charity, they drew their battle line as being a passive small one. When it first started, it never was supposed to be this beacon that these protesting players want it to be. It was and is about raising awareness, it was and is not about them getting all verbal whenever FA/UEFA hand out meek punishments/fines as that isn't the only way to raise awareness. Simply the wrong target the KIO, I feel.

  38. KIO has done a lot - no one can or should even try to deny that. However, KIO cannot issue the strength of statement it wants to in light of the ridiculous punishment handed out to Terry as it would be biting the hand that feeds it. It has to 'move on' or risk a damaging F.A. Backlash. This the the reason behind the times-shirt debacle.

    That being said, no pressure is bad press so it will put more pressure on the FA. However its all about the funding, combined with John Barnes correct view that it's society that has to be targeted first. IMO this will sort itself out over time in multi-cultural societies over the next couple generations.

    The real problem will be the widening gap between countries like ours and the Eastern Europeans.

  39. This auto completing thing drives me nuts! T-shirt (not times shirt) and swap the first pressure for press.

  40. "if you look at the way Suarez ran to Sterling and hugged the boy this weekend, you can tell he is far from racist" I almost choked on my tea - that was hilarious!

    At this point, for both Terry and Suarez there's no question of whether they're racist, but that they used a certain language. If there exists someone who can claim to be categorically NOT racist, if that person mutters racist language (context unknown) do they automatically become a racist? Nope.

    Then you have proper racists who love their club or country more than they hate black, Turkish, Indian or Germany people so will celebrate a black scorer like he's family!

    Classic example - Frank Bruno fought for Britain, talked like a cockney and married an English rose. Brits would have him round for dinner no problem. His popularity has NEVER waned. Many of his fans are from an era of racism which they left at home. Lennox came a little later but fought for himself. He actually won the world title and was one of the best. Won't be seeing HIM on Pierce Morgan's show anytime soon!

  41. Bloody hell is whiskey nose your dad or summat?! You just went off on one there pal! Calm the f down pal!

  42. Ferguson is the FAs mouthpiece...

  43. It makes me laugh every time I read something like this. On what planet do you think black people go crying and moaning every time they encounter racist behaviour? Listen people, let's put to bed this nonsense about not being able to say 'Black' to a black man ( or any other colour).

    Black people know they are black. They've been so all their lives, they've probably noticed by now. You have a right to think how you like. You do not have a right to denigrate others based on nothing more than their skin colour. I wonder how well you would cope if the tables were turned..

    If that's too difficult to assimilate, try this. If no racial element was intended, then, (to take an example John Terry), one could substitute the word black with white, and the phrase would still be one he would use, it wouldn't sound out of place if said to a white guy.

    Terry would then say : F off you white C***

    Doesn't sound right does it? He wouldn't bring colour into it, and would simply shout the straight insult.

    for me, the fact that he did bring colour into it is what makes it racially motivated, not the actual word black

    There's no need to tread on egg shells. It's the intention to use the word as an insult or as derision, or with intent to imply inferiority that makes these things racist, not the word itself

  44. I don't think the players are against KIO in their actions, just trying ( and succeeding) to raise the issue more prominently in the media in the hope that the debate can lead to more appropriate action.

    The one thing UEFA and FIFA respond to is money; their sponsors are very aware of public opinion even if they aren't, so media/ political pressure driven by public opinion forces sponsors in turn to put pressure on the governing bodies. That's why Tiger Woods lost his sponsorship deals even though his misdemeanours had nothing to do with golf

    Most footballers went straight from school direct to their clubs and were chosen for their ability in the sport, not as orators. I don't think it's fair for people to keep saying why don't they put their case together and state it. They're not lawyers, they're not politicians - they're footballers

  45. If it is some intentional attempt at getting some spotlight on the racism issue, I think it is out of order that KIO has been made the scapegoat. They have done some much since they began, for such a small passive charity. If it was some attempt on a wider issue, not KIO, than Roberts should not have gone for the KIO attack. All he had to do was change 'KIO' to 'FA'/'UEFA', even a footballer can do that, if his intended aim was to highlight the wider issue. I think it is a weak excuse that these are footballers, so we can't expect much. Roberts puts himself about in the media long before this issue, comes across well, so I don't think its beyond him to articulate that this is a wider issue if he intended not to target KIO. To get the media's attention on the racism issue by burning KIO in the process, is below the belt, regardless of the bigger picture.

  46. The kick it out campaign will fail because the FA has handled the Suarez terry affairs in such a biased manner it has alienated it's target audience, white male football fans. Evra made a vile misogynistic insult that was calculated to cause culturally specific offence. He received no punishment or censure. Ferdinand's denial of any wrong doing was refuted by the trial judge who as good as labelled him a liar in his summing up. He also went unpunished. Racism is vile and intolerable and should rightly carry an additional 'positive action' punishment tariff however you cannot allow people license to behave in a disrespectful and insulting manner because they have black skin. That is real discrimination, fuel for the racists and sickening condescension to people of colour.

  47. If you are going to insult someone, I guess you tend to focus on their most noticeable feature to caricature them. That's why Evra's insults were premeditated, because normally you would just say off-the-cuff insults like "Fnck you, you goofy tw@t" or "Niki Lauda ears" to Suarez........

    Neither Evra or Ferdinand received censure for their part in the incidents because people are treading on egg shells now.

    This breakaway 'Union' appears to be an acknowledgement by Rio that his football career is coming to an end and that he should prepare himself for a cushy little number to keep 'Brand Rio' in the spotlight.

  48. Let's call it a Fergie FAP(9gaggers will know what a FAP is)

  49. would not have anything to do with terry playing for england;-0