London – Police investigating the online racial abuse of England players following the Euro 2020 final against Italy have made 11 arrests so far.
Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka were victims of abuse after they missed penalties in the shoot-out defeat at Wembley in July.
The UK Football Policing Unit said of the 207 posts on social media identified as criminal, 123 accounts belong to individuals outside the United Kingdom.
Details of those individuals and cases are in the process of being passed on to the relevant countries to act on them.
A total of 34 accounts have so far been identified as being in the UK, and 11 of these account holders have now been arrested.
Chief Constable Mark Roberts, National Police Chiefs’ Council Football Policing lead, said “there are people out there who believe they can hide behind a social media profile and get away with posting such abhorrent comments.
“They need to think again – we have investigators proactively seeking out abusive comments in connection to the match, if they meet a criminal threshold, those posting them will be arrested.”
The Football Association said it would “not tolerate any form of discrimination and we hope these arrests act as a clear deterrent for perpetrators for online abuse.
“We will continue to work with players, fans, our stakeholders across the game and the relevant authorities to ensure that the strongest possible action is taken against those found wanting.” (dpa/NAN)