Call for inquiry after fans warned three times about 'racist behaviour' at Spurs-Chelsea match

Andy Hayes and Alison Chung, news reporters

The Professional Footballers' Association has said it is "dismayed and disgusted" at claims of racist abuse at a Premier League clash and is calling on the government to open an inquiry.

The demand for an investigation came following Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea's derby match in which allegations were made that racist abuse was directed at a black player.

"We are disgusted and dismayed that once again, a Premier League fixture has been tainted by abuse from the stands towards players," said the representative body.

"It has become clear that football players are on the receiving end of the blatant racism that is currently rife in the UK, but they are not alone.

"The PFA stands beside every player who faces discrimination. We will continue to fight on their behalf to combat this issue for good.

"The PFA calls for a government inquiry into racism and the rise in hate crime within football, and immediate and urgent action."

Sports Minister Nigel Adams confirmed he would be meeting Tottenham Hotspur on Monday.

"Depressing to see today's events at White Hart Lane," he tweeted.

"I welcome Spurs investigation and will be speaking with the club's directors tomorrow.

"There is no place for racism or any kind of discrimination in football or anywhere else."

Tottenham have already begun their own investigation after fans were warned three times about racist behaviour at their home Premier League match against Chelsea.

Blues defender Antonio Rudiger appeared to report racist chanting from Spurs fans in about the 63rd minute.

Spurs forward Son Heung-Min had been sent off for violent conduct against Rudiger shortly beforehand.

Later, in the 80th minute, referee Anthony Taylor brought both sides' captains together after Rudiger gestured that he was still being abused.

It is the latest in a string of racist incidents at England international and English league football matches.

On Sunday afternoon, supporters were warned over a loudspeaker: "Racist behaviour among spectators is interfering with the game."

They were also told: "Please remember that there is no room for racism in football."

The announcements were made at 10-minute intervals.

Taylor implemented FIFA's protocol for dealing with discrimination in games.

Tottenham said it was "conducting a thorough investigation" and vowed to take the "strongest possible action, including stadium bans".

It added: "Any form of racism is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our stadium."

Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta said: "Antonio came to me and said there had been racism towards him so I told the referee."

Azpilicueta said he was "concerned" about such behaviour, adding: "We have to stop it. We have to eradicate it as there's no place for it in football and in life."

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard said his club "absolutely want the right procedure because we don't want to see that sort of stuff".

He added: "My understanding is there was a racist comment or gesture."

Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho said he "saw nothing".

He added: "I saw the referee follow the protocol - he came to Andre Marriner (fourth official), he came to me and Frank Lampard and told us what was happening.

"The protocol was followed. Every club is together on this situation and of course we are disappointed."

Chelsea won the match 2-0 - Willian scoring both goals.

In October, six Bulgaria fans were arrested after the country's match against England in Sofia had to be stopped twice due to racism.

The Department for Digital, Media, Culture and Sport has not yet commented on the call for a government inquiry.