FT World Cup News: Racism Concerns Come to the Fore

“In the fight against racism, I am with you all the way,” Duke of Edinburgh promises England.

Prince William has spoken out against any potential racial abuse England’s players may receive. What happens if your country does not have such an outspoken leader?

As the World Cup draws closer, Prince William has allayed English players’ racism concerns. He promised the team that even though he will not be there in person to support them, should they face any racism concerns, he will be ready to support them. This reassuring statement was given at West Riding County Football in Leeds before their friendly game against Costa Rica. He was quoted as saying that he “will come down on it like a ton of bricks”. Now we know that the players will not only be carrying their soccer boots to Russia on Tuesday but they will also be carrying the Prince’s support in their hearts too.

What happens to countries that do not have a Prince behind them? FIFA is making strides in protecting all players against racism in football by enacting policies that make the game inclusive for players of any skin color. For example, the 2013 FIFA Congress gave birth to a tripartite system that aims to eradicate racism through educating, preventing and sanctioning. This is one of the anti-racism approaches that we believe will continue to triumph. As the world’s eyeballs turn towards the world’s biggest nation for the World Cup, we, like the Prince, wish for no racial incidents.