Romaine Sawyers: West Brom contact police after midfielder racially abused online

Sawyers was racially abused on social media during West Brom's game with Manchester City; Club contacted police and are seeking the toughest available legal punishment; earlier this week Man Utd duo Anthony Martial and Axel Tuanzebe were also abused online

Romaine Sawyers
Image: Romaine Sawyers was sent the message during West Brom's 5-0 defeat against Manchester City on Tuesday

West Brom have contacted the police after Romaine Sawyers was racially abused online.

The 29-year-old midfielder was sent a racist message on social media during Tuesday's 5-0 defeat to Manchester City.

Sawyers was deemed at fault for City's third goal as the struggling Baggies were thumped at The Hawthorns.

A club statement read: "West Bromwich Albion has today contacted West Midlands Police to report a racist message sent to Romaine Sawyers on social media.

Romaine Sawyers
Image: Sawyers played for West Brom between 2009 and 2013 and rejoined the club from Brentford in 2019

"Everyone at the club is appalled by the abhorrent message which was sent during Tuesday's Premier League fixture against Manchester City.

"The club has a proud history of confronting all forms of discrimination and will assist the authorities with their inquiries, seeking the toughest available legal punishment, as well as a lifetime ban from The Hawthorns for the individual responsible.

0:59
Former Everton midfielder Steven Pienaar says social media companies should get the police involved and make examples of those posting racial abuse

"Albion will offer Romaine the relevant support required at this time and continues with its long-standing commitment to help rid football of racism.

"There is No Room For Racism. Anywhere."

West Brom manager Sam Allardyce questioned if the government is doing enough to try and stamp out abuse online.

"I'm not a social media man, I have no platforms on social media at all, so I can only be made aware of it," said Allardyce.

"But as for Romaine, we have reported it to the appropriate authorities, but it leaves a big question as a country or a government... is that enough?

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West Brom manager Sam Allardyce has questioned whether the government could do more to tackle racist abuse aimed at people on social media, after Romaine Sawyers was targeted

"You know, what action will be taken? I'd say the police are already very busy in this country with the pandemic. And to deal with things like this, we could all do without.

"Certainly Romaine, everybody in the game and every black person across the country should not be subject to any abuse on social media."

Premier League will support victims of racist abuse

In a statement released on Friday, Premier League chief executive Richard Masters condemned the racist abuse sent to Sawyers, Tuanzebe and Martial.

"I am appalled to see the racial abuse received by players this week," Masters said. "Racist behaviour of any form is unacceptable and nobody should have to deal with it. Tackling online hate is a priority for football, and I believe social media companies need to do more.

"We at the Premier League will continue to support players, managers and their families who receive discriminatory online abuse. Through our central reporting system we have been able to take immediate action on cases like this and we investigate every report received, with legal action taken where possible.

"We are in regular dialogue with social media companies, challenging them to do more against discriminatory abuse on their platforms. We want to see swifter removal of offensive messages and improved identification and banning of offenders."

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