Grimsby & Accrington racism punishments sets precedent which Chelsea fans should be aware of

Grimsby’s Elliott Whitehouse punished for racist slur

On Wednesday, Grimsby Town’s Elliott Whitehouse was charged with using racist language during a football match against Northampton.

The incident occurred back in November.

In the 72nd moment of the match, Grimsby’s Whitehouse called Northampton midfielder Alan McCormack a “pikey”.

It’s worth noting that Whitehouse tried to defend himself against the racism charges. As detailed in the FA’s report:

The player says that ‘pikey’ was not the term he would use, ordinarily, to describe a member of the travelling community.

He thought the term was simply an alternative to ‘gypsy’ and he had no idea until the interview with the FA that it was particularly offensive or insulting.

The FA clearly disagreed, and Whitehouse has been hit with a 6-match ban and a 2,000 pound fine.

 

Accrington’s Sam Finley also punished for saying ‘pikey’

Towards the end of April, Accrington Stanley midfielder Sam Finley was also punished by the FA for saying the word “pikey”.

Finley directed his comment to Rochdale’s Irish international Paul McShane during a League One match on January 1.

On that occasion, the FA slapped McShane with an 8-match ban for his slur.

 

Why Chelsea fans should be aware of these cases

While players in the lower leagues have now been hit with severe punishments for using the word “pikey”, Chelsea have so far managed to evade any similar actions.

However, as was evident back in October 2019, Chelsea fans like to taunt West Ham supporters using this offensive term.

Chelsea fans are known for singing the following chant at matches.

Frankie Lampard,
Frankie Lampard,
Oh Frankie Lampard,
Oh Frankie Lampard,
Scored 200 against the Pikeys…

Lampard, who is Chelsea’s all-time leading goalscorer, scored his 200th Blues goal against West Ham.

Of course, Lampard played for West Ham before joining Chelsea.

This song caused a stir earlier in the season, when Chelsea fans sang it loudly against Southampton.

After the game, Blues manager Lampard criticised the supporters, saying:

None of us want it. I’ve said this before here.

I will always back the Chelsea fans in terms of how they support us.

But we don’t want to have chants and stuff that are discriminatory to anyone. I think we all need to look at it.

It is a wider problem than Chelsea, without a doubt, but it should not stop us talking about it.

 

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This article was edited by Benjamin Newman.

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