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Two men arrested for alleged racism at FA Cup qualifier

Two men arrested for alleged racism at FA Cup qualifier
© Reuters
The game between Haringey Borough and Yeovil Town had to be abandoned after players from both sides walked off.

Two men have been arrested over alleged racist abuse of players at a football match between Haringey Borough and Yeovil Town on Saturday.

The FA Cup qualifier was abandoned after players from both sides walked off in the 64th minute.

Haringey manager Tom Loizou alleged that defender Coby Rowe had suffered racist abuse and goalkeeper Douglas Pajetat was also said to have been spat at and had missiles thrown at him.

Players from both sides were led off by their managers after the abuse at Haringey’s ground, Coles Park, and made a decision not to finish the match.

Visiting fans from Yeovil, a former football league side, began to be disruptive shortly before their team gained a 1-0 lead, according to former Haringey left-back Michael O’Donoghue.

Despite the successful penalty and attempts from the referee and several Yeovil players to try to calm the crowd, the match was later called off.

It is thought that Saturday’s incident was the first time a match at such a senior level has been abandoned due to racism.

Two men, aged 23 and 26, were arrested in Chard and Yeovil on suspicion of racially aggravated common assault.

Both are in custody at a Somerset police station.

Metropolitan Police officers are leading the investigation with the help of Avon and Somerset Police.

The Football Association has launched an investigation and both Haringey and Yeovil have said they will co-operate with the authorities.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 quoting CAD 5272/19 Oct.

The FA said it is “deeply concerned” about the allegation and is looking into the incident “as a matter of urgency”.

The alleged incident occurred just five days after England’s Euro 2020 qualifier in Bulgaria was halted twice as fans were warned about racist behaviour.

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