Campaigners blast Chelsea fan's 'racism' and abuse of Scotland's John McGinn

Scotland international John McGinn was subjected to ‘anti-Irish and anti-Catholic racism’ during Aston Villa’s match with Chelsea.

Kai Havertz of Chelsea is challenged by John McGinn of Aston Villa. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images)
Kai Havertz of Chelsea is challenged by John McGinn of Aston Villa. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images)

The former Hibs and St Mirren midfielder, now an established Premier League star, was filmed taking a corner kick at Stamford Bridge during his team’s 3-0 defeat in west London.

A torrent of foul-mouthed abuse can be heard coming from the home supporters’ section of the ground as McGinn prepares to take the set-piece, and the verbal volley has been described as “unacceptable in football and anywhere in society” by anti-racism campaigners.

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Show Racism the Red Card Scottish Campaign manager, Jordan Allison told the Scottish Sun: “The language used is anti-Irish and anti-Catholic racism. It is unacceptable in football and anywhere in society.

John McGinn of Scotland is challenged by Aleksandar Dragovic of Austria during the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier match between Austria and Scotland at Ernst Happel Stadion on September 07, 2021 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Christian Hofer/Getty Images)

"Our charity encourages anyone who hears this type of abuse to safely challenge and report it.

"Show Racism the Red Card works with young people and adults to recognise the impact that racism has on the lives of individuals as well as entire communities.

“We offer our support to any individual or organisation seeking to reflect on their behaviours or use of language, and become more confident in recognising, challenging and supporting the victims of racism.”

The match was McGinn’s first game back for Aston Villa after the international break and a positive covid test result which ruled him out of his club’s 1-1 draw with Brentford and delayed his arrival at Steve Clarke’s Scotland camp until after the 2-0 World Cup qualifying loss to Denmark.

The midfielder made a winning return to the international fold though, helping Scotland to 1-0 wins against Moldova and Austria, the latter of which included his brother Paul’s debut.

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