Racism in football: Charlton's Lyle Taylor urges FA to help players do more to address racism in football

Jack Watson

Charlton forward Lyle Taylor has opened up on his experiences of racism in football and called on football’s governing bodies to help players do more to tackle the problem.

The last 12 months has seen a rise in the number of high-profile reported cases of racism, with Raheem Sterling drawing praise with his handling of the issue.

Taylor revealed he has been told to “f*** off back to my own country” just two weeks before giving an honest and revealing interview with Troy Townsend.

“Will it always be there? Yes, in my opinion” Taylor said of racism to Kick it Out campaigner Townsend.

“I’ve been racially abused when I was in Scotland, been called a c*** by a Dunfermline fan, I’ve been told to f*** off back to my own country in the last fortnight. I have heard stories from former teammates," he said.

“I’ve seen it. You see it on the news…everywhere and to be honest, do I think we can everybody in this country and everybody around the world to the degree that it completely eradicates it…no. You’re still going to have bigots. You’re still going to have ignorants in the world.

“When it happened in Scotland, I just scored. The local derby and if I’m honest, right now I could not tell you how I thought at the time because I don’t remember and it was a long time ago now and I’ve gone past that.

“With something that happened to me more recently in the last couple of weeks it hurt. It hurt for more than just the racial connotations, it hurt because of where it had come from and the age of the person it had come from, that’s why it hurt so much."

Taylor suggested that players should be able to do more to combat racism in football, but there are not acting as they always want to out of fear of punishment by the FA for saying something the governing body may feel they should not.

“There is only so much we can do as players because we’re not allowed to say this or that,” he said.

“There is only so much we can do before we get reprimanded from the governing body of our sport and it is difficult. There is so much we need to stay and we should have the power and ability to say it all calm, it’s also very difficult to explain to people who haven’t been racially abused how it feels white people have never been victims of oppression, so something almost as trivial as that is washed away, it’s water off a duck’s back.

­“If I wanted to send a tweet or whatever it was and I’d have to be very careful on the language used and it didn’t come across as disparagement and I’d have to be very careful that I could not be done for a multitude of things.”

Watch Lyle Taylor’s full interview with Kick it Out campaigner Troy Townsend here.