Kerala Blasters expressed ‘deep disappointment and concern’ about a racism incident between a player of KBFC and Bengaluru FC in their Indian Super League match on Friday.
“Kerala Blasters wish to express our deep disappointment and concern with a regrettable incident that occurred during our opening match against Bengaluru FC,” the club said in a statement.
“It has come to our attention that during the match, one of our players was subjected to a disrespectful gesture by a Bengaluru FC player. We want to make it abundantly clear that there is absolutely no room for racist and derogatory behaviour in our Club and in the sport.”
The incident in question is an exchange between Australian winger Ryan Williams and Indian full-back Aibanbha Dohling. The two players got into a small tussle on the sidelines after a tackle, after which Williams was seen making a racist gesture at the KBFC player.
“Racism, discrimination, and disrespectful actions have no place on the football pitch or anywhere else. We have filed an official complaint with the appropriate authorities, urging them to conduct a thorough investigation into this incident. We trust that the authorities will treat this matter with the utmost seriousness and take the necessary steps to address it appropriately,” KBFC added.
“We also call upon our good colleagues at Bengaluru FC to take appropriate action. Football is a sport that unites people from diverse backgrounds and cultures. It is a platform for mutual respect. We remain committed to promoting a culture of diversity, inclusion, and respect in football and in our Club.”