We need action and education to stop racist abuse - Wilfred Zaha

Crystal Palace Wilfred Zaha in action for his club wearing the home kit
Ernest Sunday

Crystal Palace winger Wilfred Zara has stated the importance of actions and teaching of both the young and old to stop racist abuse.

His statement came after the 27-year-old player shared a screenshot of a racist message sent to him by a 12-year-old boy before their match against Aston Villa, which they lost 2-0. The West Midlands Police later arrested the little boy.

After their game on Sunday, Zaha took to social to talk about the incident saying.

Wilfred Zaha in action for his club in a home game

"People need to understand that whatever your age, that your behavior and your words come with consequences, and you cannot hide behind social media," Zaha said in a statement on social media.

"It is important social media platforms do as they did yesterday and seek out these individuals and remove them. This is not the first time I have received messages like this, nor am I the only player to receive messages like this -- it happens every day."

The Ivory Coast international added that saying only no to racism won't solve the problem.

"It is not enough to be disgusted by these messages I received and move on," he added.

"It isn't enough to just say #notoracism. We need action; we need education; things need to change."

Crystal Palace and Premier League backed Zaha condemning the message that was sent to him saying.

"It is very saddening on the day of a game that a player wakes up to this cowardly and despicable abuse," Palace manager Roy Hodgson said in an interview with Sky Sports.

"I think it is right that Wilf made people aware of it; I don't think it is something he should keep quiet about.

"I think it is very good that our club, Aston Villa and the Premier League are doing everything they can to find out who this despicable individual is, and one can only hope that they will get identified and they will get called to account and they will pay for these actions.

"There is literally no excuse; there is no excuse at all."

A statement from Premier League said: "This behavior is completely unacceptable, and the Premier League stands alongside Wilfried Zaha in opposing this and discrimination in any form. There is #NoRoomForRacism, anywhere.

"We will continue to support players, managers, coaches, and their family members who receive serious discriminatory online abuse.

"Through our dedicated reporting system, we can take immediate action on cases like this."

Similar act repeated itself on Saturday when Sheffield United McGoldrick shared a screenshot of a message sent to him after his club won against Chelsea with him scoring a brace in the game.

Sheffield United also stepped to condemn the message sent to him by an unknown person saying.

"As a club, we will support David McGoldrick and will do all we can to find the perpetrator of this disgusting message," the club said in a statement on Twitter.

"We will work with the relevant authorities to ensure the person behind this post is brought to justice.

"This cannot continue. Something needs to change."

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