Kick It Out, the anti-discrimination group, has condemned the racist abuse aimed at Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham on social media and said that networking sites must do more to address the “insidious problem”.
Abraham missed Chelsea’s final penalty in their shootout defeat by Liverpool in the Super Cup in Istanbul on Wednesday night.
The 21-year-old has since been targeted on social media and Kick It Out said that racist abuse on social media has become “increasingly predictable” in football.
“We received reports of racist abuse directed at Tammy Abraham on social media after the Chelsea’s Uefa Super Cup match,” the body said.
“Such abuse is now increasingly predictable, but no less disgusting. We send our support to Tammy and reiterate our call for Twitter and other social companies to clamp down on this level of abuse.
“This is a call to action – we want to know what they are going to do to tackle this insidious problem.”
The abuse of Abraham follows four reported cases of racist abuse on the opening weekend of the EFL season earlier this month. Southend United’s Theo Robinson, Stoke’s James McClean, Barnsley’s Bambo Diaby and the sister of Fulham defender Cyrus Christie were all allegedly targeted.
In July, Kick It Out said reports of racism in football had risen by 43 per cent in the 2018/19 season.
Speaking immediately after the match on Wednesday night, Abraham said he had the instant support of his team-mates after his crucial penalty was saved by Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian.
“I’m always someone who believes in myself in penalties,” Abraham said. “I had a few last season [for Aston Villa] and a few important ones.
“Unfortunately this was probably one of the most important ones I missed. It’s about how I react and just get my head up. The boys have made it feel like nothing has even happened.
“They say the top players always miss penalties and it’s about how you react. I’ve just got to keep pushing myself. Everyone’s had their arms around me. It’s something to learn from. It’s better it happened now than later on. You grow into a man and learn from it.”
Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard has shown plenty of faith in his younger players, including Abraham, so far this season and he was pleased with his side’s overall performance against Liverpool after their 4-0 drubbing by Manchester United on Sunday.
Asked if Lampard’s faith in youth provides him with more confidence, Abraham said: “It does. A lot of the boys see the way he wants us to play and we tried to play like that against Liverpool.
“We showed a lot of glimpses of what we can do. We’re a threat. We’re good defensively and we can attack. We showed glimpses against Liverpool. We just have to build, go into the game on Sunday [against Leicester City] and hopefully get three points. I can’t ask for a better bunch of lads – I just have to push this season and hopefully we can be up there to fight for the title.”