Garvy Neville spoke for decent football fans in England, Scotland and beyond when he took a stand against racism in the game, writes Angus Robertson.
Gary Neville is a star. Not just as a talented footballer and sporting pundit but for taking a stand against racism in football. After shameful scenes at Chelsea’s Premier League win at Tottenham, Neville wasn’t pulling his punches in the after-match commentary.
Millions of people have now watched the video of him calling out the problem. He has been trending on Twitter and elsewhere on social media and quite rightly so.
He was correct to point out that the problem is not just one at football matches but also society-wide, with special responsibility for political leaders.
Neville said that racism in football was mirrored in UK politics and shamed the Conservatives and Labour for not doing enough to stamp out racism in their parties.
When crass comments were made by the host pointing out that Neville’s views were not necessarily those of Sky TV, he pushed back and challenged any assertion that his views were not balanced. Sky Sports host David Jones has subsequently apologised for “shutting down” discussion about the racist incident.
In my opinion, Gary Neville speaks for the majority of decent football fans in England, Scotland and everywhere else. There is, sadly, racism in all countries, but there is no place for it in football or society. Big efforts have been made to try and stamp out this evil, but there is more still to do. A good start would be to reward Gary Neville with a knighthood rather than Nigel Farage, who has done so much to sow discord and dogwhistle racism.