Tag Archives: semitism

Luis Suarez can"t win Footballer of The Year Award – Martin Samuel

Suarez is poetry in motion… but can he really be Player of the Year

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UPDATED:

01:47 GMT, 21 November 2012

And the days are not full enough And the nights are not full enough And life slips by like a field mouse. Not shaking the grass. Ezra Pound wrote that. Remarkable, isn't it

'Pound is more responsible for the 20th century revolution in poetry than any other individual,' said TS Eliot, and he would know. So here's one of his lesser known works.

'You let in the Jew and the Jew rotted your empire, and you yourselves out-jewed the Jew. And the big Jew has rotted every nation he has wormed into.' Pound said that in a pro-fascist radio broadcast in March 1942. He said plenty of other stuff, too, and was arrested for treason after the war.

Saint and sinner: Luis Suarez has been accused of diving during his time at Liverpool

Saint and sinner: Luis Suarez has been accused of diving during his time at Liverpool

Later, Pound renounced his anti-Semitism in public, but recollections of the private individual tell a different story. He would refer to people he disliked as Jews, and refuse to talk to psychiatrists with Jewish names.

He really wasn't a nice guy. Doesn't make Eliot wrong, though. Doesn't make the depth of emotional meaning conveyed in the sparse four lines of And the days are not full enough – that's the whole poem up there, by the way – any less astonishing. Same with Philip Larkin.

'I can hear fat Caribbean germs pattering after me in the Underground,' he wrote, disgusted, to Kingsley Amis on a visit to London. Then again, Larkin was disgusted by a lot of things; by himself, often enough. For Larkin in excelsis, however, read An Arundel Tomb. 'What will survive of us is love.'

We could go on. Through Chuck Berry to Miles Davis or Michael Jackson. We separate the man from his art. But not in football. In football, we want it all. Beauty and the blameless life. We can accept that poets, artists, musicians or writers can be despicable creatures redeemed by their work, but from our footballers we demand the exalted physicality of an athlete and the immaculate morality of an angel.

Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez

Light and shade: The Uruguayan striker is a match-winner for Liverpool but has also been accused of stamping on an opponent (above right)

More from Martin Samuel …

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11/11/12

Chelsea 3 Shakhtar Donetsk 2: Moses works a miracle as Di Matteo's luck holds
07/11/12

Manchester City 2 Ajax 2: It's all gone De Jong as Euro exit looms for Mancini misfits
06/11/12

Chelsea 2 Manchester United 3: Crazy red card for Torres and Hernandez offside goal hand United victory at Stamford Bridge
28/10/12

Martin Samuel: Amid his Twitter row, Liverpool's Chang should know using the supporters as muscle is a dangerous abuse of power
23/10/12

Shakhtar Donetsk 2 Chelsea 1: Bad case of the Blues as holders feel pain in Ukraine
23/10/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

So could Luis Suarez be the Footballer of the Year this season Of course not. Should Luis Suarez be the Footballer of the Year this season Well, who else have you got

This is a crude calculation as it presumes no other player could have scored Suarez's goals, but the difference he has made to Liverpool this season equates to seven league points and, potentially, a place in the Europa League.

Goals from Suarez have changed Liverpool's dividend on seven occasions. He has been the difference between victory and a draw with Norwich City and a draw and a defeat against Manchester City, Sunderland, Everton, Newcastle United and Chelsea.

Without his goal at Anfield, the Europa League qualifier with Hearts would have gone into extra time. And in this season's Premier League, seven points is currently separating Liverpool and a place in the bottom three.

True, if Suarez had not been in the team, somebody else would have been and that somebody might have scored, too. So this isn't exact science.

Nobody can accurately evaluate Suarez's worth to Liverpool this season but, ball-park, seven points sounds about right. Maybe more. Is there any footballer in the country more influential

Last week, Jamie Carragher compared Suarez to Lionel Messi at Barcelona and Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid. Indeed, he placed him higher, because Suarez is not playing in a great team. But Footballer of the Year No chance.

This is bogeyman Suarez, remember, verbal debaser of Patrice Evra, alleged diver, alleged stamper, the man English football loves to hate and boo, even during the feelgood Olympic Games this summer when just completing the course got a standing ovation.

How can he sway a vote of journalists, some of whom believe their award winner must stand out as a role model, as much as a footballer How could he earn the votes of players, some of whom are black, ethically-minded or represent Manchester United Could you vote for him No. Could I It would be very, very hard.

On target: Suarez has scored more goals than any other player in the Barclays Premier League this term

On target: Suarez has scored more goals than any other player in the Barclays Premier League this term

A vote for Suarez would appear to send out the message that racism doesn't matter. Yet I'd have no hesitation in referring to Larkin as our greatest modern poet; no agonising over love for the music of the wife-beating Ike Turner either.

Maybe by the end of the season the Suarez dilemma will no longer exist. Different players go through purple patches at various times – Juan Mata was brilliant for Chelsea as Roberto Di Matteo's side topped the table early on – but few have been as consistent as Suarez, with no sign of relenting.

Left to fend for himself by an almost wantonly negligent series of executive choices in the transfer market, he has prevented Liverpool entering freefall. And he is not even a conventional striker.

If Liverpool had acted with coherence this summer, Suarez would be playing beside a prolific goalscorer, setting up as many as he scores, the burden on his shoulders relieved. For Uruguay, he most regularly played alongside Diego Forlan or Sebastian Abreu. These days Edinson Cavani is his regular foil. The idea of him leading a line unaccompanied would baffle his national coach, Oscar Tabarez.

Imagine: If Suarez was Footballer of the Year, they'd be uproar arguments and probably resignations

Imagine: If Suarez was Footballer of the Year, they'd be uproar, arguments and probably resignations

What he is doing at Liverpool is far removed from his comfort zone. And yet he is this season's peak performer: top scorer in the Premier League with two more goals than Robin van Persie and top scorer of any Premier League player in all club competitions, again two more than Van Persie.

The difference is, Van Persie has Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez to take a load off, Suarez is in virtual isolation.

Carragher also placed Suarez alongside Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and Fernando Torres among recent goalscorers at Liverpool, but in essence he is more like Steven Gerrard or Carragher himself, in his ability to influence matches sometimes with sheer will.

Yet, imagine if he was the Footballer of the Year. There would be uproar, protests, arguments, quite probably resignations. A breakaway black union without doubt, if he won the PFA vote, a very awkward few weeks for representatives of the media if he topped any poll of journalists.

Mock: Suarez celebrated in front of Moyes after the Everton boss accused him of simulation

Mock: Suarez celebrated in front of Moyes after the Everton boss accused him of simulation

An unrepentant horror as an example to the next generation, it would be fiendishly hard to justify his glorification, almost inexcusable. Yet is he the best player in the league This minute, by a mile.

Those crowned Footballer of the Year tend to be winners. It seemed incongruous two years ago when Scott Parker collected the prize in a season that ended in relegation for his club, West Ham United.

The case for Suarez would be different. It would be based on his contribution to a former member of the elite, Liverpool, and how far a great club might have tumbled without him.

There was certainly a similar case for Chris Waddle at Tottenham Hotspur one season, when the club could easily have slipped into the bottom three without his frequent interventions. Yet Suarez won't win and can't win, we know that.

He has been associated with too much of football's dark side – racism, simulation – to rise above the negativity. He refused to shake hands with Evra, at first, even though the wronged man made the first move, he openly mocked David Moyes when the Everton manager dared to suggest he went to ground too easily. And yet despite the opprobrium, Suarez stays strong.

If no-one likes him, see if he cares. Perhaps this is why, as well as being this season's best footballer he is also one that troubles the soul.

Suarez does not do sorry, he does not do contrition and, in this, demands to be considered only for his art. Will he care if recognition is not his at the end of the season Probably not. As Pound said on his release from a lengthy stint of hard labour: 'I've had it worse.'

Arrests: Crowd trouble in Germany is at a 12-year high

Arrests: Crowd trouble in Germany is at a 12-year high

Don't mention the arrests…

And more news just in from Germany, where tickets are cheap, stadiums are full, standing is tolerated and crowd trouble is at a 12-year high.

According to figures released to Reuters in Berlin, the 2011-12 season had the highest number of criminal proceedings this century, a sharp rise in the amount of injured fans from the previous season and a 20 per cent increase in police work hours.

'Criminal proceedings are up 70 per cent, work hours up 40 per cent and injuries up 120 per cent from the 12-year average,' said a police spokesman.

A total of 8,143 criminal cases against individuals were launched compared with 5,818 the previous year, while the number of injuries rose from 843 to 1,142.

Meanwhile, according to the Home Office, English football arrests are at an all-time low since records began in 1985, and there was a 32 per cent decline in Premier League arrests from the 2010-11 season. But keep this quiet. It doesn't fit the self-flagellating narrative.

And while we're at it… Unbuyable Try to lure him back, Sir Alex!

He is back, at a football ground near you, tonight. And while Cristiano Ronaldo can be guaranteed a hostile reception when he steps out for Real Madrid against Manchester City, there will not be a true football fan in the stadium who does not feel a frisson of excitement at the anticipation of seeing him play live again.

Because we miss him, of course we do. Even the blue lot, deep down. Manchester United miss him, English football misses him. We haven't had one quite as good since. Not a player whose talent is so immense he actually found a new way of kicking a football.

Welcome (back) to Manchester: Ronaldo touched down in England on Tuesday night ahead of Real's clash with City

Welcome (back) to Manchester: Ronaldo touched down in England ahead of Real's clash with City

Researchers at the Ecole Polytechnique Hydrodynamics Laboratory in Paris will test their theory about the way Ronaldo strikes his knuckleball at a scientific gathering in San Diego this week. They have been dropping steel beads into a tank of water and studying the trajectory. Nobody does that for Ashley Young.

So, when Sir Alex Ferguson says that he remains on good terms with Ronaldo but the player is 'unbuyable', the heart sinks. Try, Sir Alex. Have a go, for all of us. It doesn't matter if it makes life really hard for your rivals. We won't moan, even if you win the league by 25 points. Just get our guy back. Please.

Relationship: Ferguson has claimed the former Manchester Untied star is 'unbuyable'

Relationship: Ferguson has claimed the former Manchester Untied star is 'unbuyable'

Madrid is the love of Ronaldo's life, but he hasn't always felt loved back. Good. Use that. Tell him he's wasted there. Tell him the Spanish crowds have never taken to him as they have Lionel Messi. Massage his ego, play on his insecurities. Wasn't there a time when Madrid made him sad Didn't he refuse to celebrate his goals at the start of the season, because he felt unappreciated That never happened at Old Trafford, did it Hell, it's worth a try.

Unbuyable is such a miserable term. Unbuyable says he is Madrid's, for ever. Unbuyable means nights like this are one of the few chances you will get to see one of the world's greatest players at the height of his powers. If you can go, don't miss it. He's the one you'll tell the grandkids about.

Sacking Hughes might not add up

The problem for Tony Fernandes at Queens Park Rangers, and for all owners, is that the only way to build a club is to place faith in a coach and his vision. Invariably, this means an equal investment in players, staff and the remodelling of academies and training facilities.

In terms of results, there is no indication this season that Rangers are going to turn around under Mark Hughes, so continued support now is merely a leap of faith.

In training: Hughes puts his squad through their paces on Tuesday as his future hangs in the balance

In training: Hughes puts his squad through their paces on Tuesday as his future hangs in the balance

Yet the alternative, to remove Hughes and his entourage and start again, is fraught with expense and difficulty with no certainty of alleviating the crisis, either. West Ham United stuck with Avram Grant and went down, West Bromwich Albion sacked Roberto Di Matteo and stayed up.

Wigan Athletic kept Roberto Martinez and stayed up, Wolverhampton Wanderers dismissed Mick McCarthy and went down. The only concrete guarantee is that the cost of replacing the manager, his backroom boys and overhauling the squad twice in one season is horrific. This alone may be what buys Hughes the time to turn Rangers around.

Tottenham fans care more about football than racism, says Society of Black Lawyers

Spurs fans care more about football than kicking racism out of the the game, claims Herbert
Society of Black Lawyers maintain call for 'criminal convictions after November 20'
'Small minority' of Tottenham fans to blame for 'anti-Semitic' chanting, says Herbert
'Their love of football is greater than their desire to deal with anti-Semitism', adds SBL chief
Tottenham have refused to comment on the matter

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UPDATED:

12:26 GMT, 9 November 2012

The Society of Black Lawyers hit out at Tottenham and the Football Association after repeating its threat to go to the police over what it regards as anti-Semitic chanting at White Hart Lane.

Spurs fans sent an open message of defiance to the SBL on Thursday night when they chanted 'We'll sing what we want' and 'Yid Army' throughout the club's 3-1 home win over Maribor in the Europa League.

Despite being a club with a traditionally large Jewish following, Tottenham fans often refer to themselves as 'Yids' or the 'Yid Army' in chants during the club's matches.

Backing: Tottenham fans cheer on their side against Maribor on Thursday

'We'll sing what we want': Spurs fans were in defiant mood on Thursday

Although Spurs claim otherwise, the
SBL say the phrase is anti-Semitic and they have vowed to complain to
the police under the Public Order Act if supporters continue to use the
chant beyond the November 20 deadline it has set.

The SBL had monitors at the north
London ground on Thursday night who heard the chants and this morning it
reiterated its commitment to report any such action to the police
should fans continue their actions.

'We are not going to let go on this,' SBL chair Peter Herbert said.

'After November 20 there is a potential that people will get a criminal conviction. If they want to run that risk then fine.

'We are serious. We aren't in this
for sensationalism. We think the vast majority of Tottenham fans are
sensible and do not engage in anti-Semitism.

'It's a very small minority who obviously don't care about any offence.

'Their love of football is greater than their desire to deal with anti-Semitism.'

Tottenham refused to comment on the
matter. The London club stick by the statement they released on
Wednesday which read: 'Our guiding principle in respect of the “Y-word”
is based on the point of law itself – the distinguishing factor is the
intent with which it is used ie if it is used with the deliberate
intention to cause offence. This has been the basis of prosecutions of
fans of other teams to date.

A 'Yid Army' Spurs flag

Flying the flag: Herbert has launched another attack on Tottenham supporters

'Our fans adopted the chant as a
defence mechanism in order to own the term and thereby deflect
anti-Semitic abuse. They do not use the term to others to cause any
offence, they use it as a chant amongst themselves.'

Herbert believes the club have been
misguided over the issue and claims fans can be prosecuted regardless of
whether the songs are intended to cause offence.

'Under Section Five of the Public
Order Act it doesn't matter what the intent is of the individual or the
crowd, if the words cause harassment, alarm, or distress to anyone
watching then that is sufficient,' Herbert said.

Three and easy: Defoe scored a hat-trick in Tottenham's win on Thursday

Three and easy: Defoe scored a hat-trick in Tottenham's win on Thursday

'If a crowd of men were walking down
Tottenham High Road singing the Y-word causing offence they would be
arrested. It doesn't make sense that they can make White Hart Lane a
no-go area for law.'

Herbert ridiculed Tottenham's
statement and claimed the SBL has widespread support for its campaign
from within the Jewish community.

'We have no doubt there will be complaints (to the police),' Herbert added.

'If the Met Police say they are going to look at prosecutions then there is a good chance it will stop.

'Tottenham's statement is
indefensible. I think if you went to the United States, Canada or South
Africa and you made a statement like that you would face ridicule and
condemnation.

'It is a very sad day for English football when clubs feel they have to defend a term of abuse.'

Herbert also accused the FA of a lack of interest in the Tottenham matter.

'This is an appalling abdication of
responsibility by the FA,' he said. 'It's a complete disgrace that they
have stayed silent on this.

'There is an inertia from the FA over racism and anti-Semitism.

'You can't go and complain about racism and anti-Semitism in Serbia and then have it happening in your own back yard.'

Tottenham fans Yid Army T-shirt fightback

Tottenham fans get shirty over calls to ban 'Yid Army' chants: Spurs supporters launch T-shirt fightback over anti-Semitism claims

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UPDATED:

14:12 GMT, 9 November 2012

Tottenham fans can hit back at attempts to stop them referring to themselves as the 'Yid Army' with a T-shirt protest.

Fans outside White Hart Lane before Thursday night's Europa League victory over Maribor were heard discussing the T-shirt slogan (pictured) which reads: 'YIDARMY WHL N17'.

The T-shirt can be purchased for 11.99 at www.n17club.co.uk. But it has emerged there is a dedicated Yid Army website – www.yidarmy.com – where Tottenham fans can buy a range of clothing emblazoned with the 'Y-word' slogan.

Show your support: The T-shirts and jumpers emblazoned with the slogans start at 11.99

Show your support: The T-shirts and jumpers emblazoned with the slogans start at 11.99

Show your support: The T-shirts and jumpers emblazoned with the slogans start at 11.99

A debate has been raging this week over whether use of the word 'Yid' by Tottenham fans is anti-Semitic. High-profile campaigners such as celebrity Chelsea fan David Baddiel insist it is. But Spurs fans – and the club themselves – argue that it is about context.

Tottenham issued an impassioned defence of their fans' right to use the term 'Yid' in their matchday chants.

Peter Herbert, chairman of the Society of Black Lawyers, described the north London club’s attitude as being '40 years out of date', and vowed to make a formal complaint to the Metropolitan Police if chanting the 'Y-word' continued at White Hart Lane.

The society claim such chants – either by opposition fans or Spurs supporters themselves – are anti-Semitic and unacceptable in contemporary society.

'We are not going to let go on this,'
SBL chair Peter Herbert said. 'After November 20 there is a potential
that people will get a criminal conviction. If they want to run that
risk then fine.

'Their (Tottenham's) love of football is greater than their desire to deal with anti-Semitism.'

Baddiel, speaking exclusively to Sportsmail,
said: 'The idea that Spurs fans are reclaiming the Y-word and are
entitled to because so many of them are Jewish is simply not true,' he
said. 'There are only 250,000 Jews in Britain as a whole and I'd say
about three or four per cent of Tottenham's crowd is Jewish.

Getting shirty: Defoe bagged three and Spurs fans celebrated with a song about him, which incorporates the 'Y' word

Getting shirty: Defoe bagged three and Spurs fans celebrated with a song about him, which incorporates the 'Y' word

Getting shirty: Defoe bagged three and Spurs fans celebrated with a song about him, which incorporates the 'Y' word

'That means well over 90 per cent of those chanting “Yid Army” are not actually Jewish and that is just one of several reasons why it cannot be right. If, for instance, there was a team in Brixton called Brixton United, and they had a mainly white support who adopted the N-word as their badge of honour and went round chanting “N***** Army”, they would be closed down tomorrow.

'At Tottenham, the club's “Jewishness” is just an historical association with the area. It's doubtful that there are more than five per cent actual Jews in the ground at home games (only 0.4 per cent of the UK is Jewish). So the argument “but it's just like Snoop Doggy Dogg using the N-word” does not apply to most Spurs fans.'

Tottenham's stance over the use of the word 'Yid' is clear and the club have taken legal advice over the matter.

Controversy: Spurs fans have vowed to keep using the chants, despite calls for prosecution over alleged racism

Controversy: Spurs fans have vowed to keep using the chants, despite calls for prosecution over alleged racism

Controversy: Spurs fans have vowed to keep using the chants, despite calls for prosecution over alleged racism

Spurs said in a statement: 'The club does not tolerate any form of racist or abusive chanting.

'Our guiding principle in respect of
the “Y-word” is based on the point of law itself — the distinguishing
factor is the intent with which it is used, i.e. if it is used with the
deliberate intention to cause offence.

'This has been the basis of
prosecutions of fans of other teams to date. Our fans adopted the chant
as a defence mechanism in order to own the term and thereby deflect
anti-Semitic abuse. They do not use the term to others to cause any
offence, they use it as a chant among themselves.

'The club believes that real
anti-Semitic abuse such as hissing to simulate the noise of gas chambers
is the real evil and the real offence.'

Sing your heart out: The use of the Yid Army chants is deeply engrained among Spurs fans

Sing your heart out: The use of the Yid Army chants is deeply engrained among Spurs fans

Racism in football – Six-point plan including Rooney rule

A Taylor-made plan to stop breakaway includes 'Rooney rule' and instant sackings

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UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 24 October 2012

Faced with the prospect of losing nearly half his members to a breakaway black players’ union, Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive Gordon Taylor attempted to avert such an outcome by announcing a radical six-point action plan.

Taylor made his recommendations after Sportsmail revealed that some of the game’s leading stars were about to set up their own independent body, called the Black Players’ Association, if football’s governors did not act.

The PFA proposals — which it is understood complied with direct recommendations made in private discussions with black players —include the dramatic prospect of firing managers, players or administrators if they are found guilty of racially motivated offences.

Centre of attention: John Terry was banned for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand

Centre of attention: John Terry was banned for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand

Taylor's six-point plan
Speeding up the process of dealing with reported racist abuse with close monitoring of any incidents.Consideration
of stiffer penalties for racist abuse and to include an equality
awareness programme for culprits and clubs involved.An
English form of the 'Rooney rule' – introduced by the NFL in America in
2003 – to make sure qualified black coaches are on interview lists for
job vacancies.The proportion of black coaches and managers to be monitored and any inequality or progress highlighted.Racial abuse to be considered gross misconduct in player and coach contracts (and therefore potentially a sackable offence).To
not lose sight of other equality issues such as gender, sexual
orientation, disability, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and Asians in
football.

Taylor is also demanding an increase in the number of ethnic minority coaches in the game by adopting the ‘Rooney Rule’ — used in American football — to promote up-and-coming black managers.

The move sparked an almost immediate response from the Ferdinand family and so eased the threat of a breakaway union that could attract the 44 per cent of PFA members from ethnic minority backgrounds.

If the PFA receives support from Premier League and Football League clubs, those teams would have to interview candidates from minority backgrounds as part of the process of choosing a boss. Norwich’s Chris Hughton is the only black manager in the top flight.

Taylor said: ‘We need the football family together on this. No-one ever said racism was easy to deal with. We have got to do our best and we need the fire in the belly of a lot of young players and for them to be on board with us. If they want their own particular select group who they feel they can influence everybody more than the whole PFA as a union together, I would say they are seriously mistaken.

‘If we are not careful this will set us back years. It would not only set back the game, it would set back the anti-racist initiative.’

Stance: Rio Ferdinand

Stance: Anton Ferdinand

Kicking off: (clockwise from top left) Rio Ferdinand, Anton Ferdinand, Joleon Lescott and Jason Roberts all snubbed the Kick It Out t-shirt campaign in the Premier League last weekend

Stance: Jason Roberts

Stance: Joleon Lescott

The prospect of sacking a player, coach, manager or administrator for a racially motivated offence is one of the most striking changes proposed by Taylor. It means Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, banned for eight matches last season, and Chelsea skipper John Terry, serving a four-game suspension, could have been dismissed by their clubs instead.

For Taylor’s motion to be carried with the Premier League he needs the support of 14 of the 20 top-flight clubs. That will also apply to his call for the implementation of the Rooney Rule.

Former Aston Villa and England striker Dion Dublin supported Taylor’s plans, saying: ‘The only arguments we have are: are there enough black and ethnic minority people applying for these jobs If there are the same amount as there are white people, then there is a problem. There must be a problem in the decision-making process upstairs somewhere.

Plea: Gordan Taylor wants black players to stick with the Professional Footballers Association

Plea: Gordan Taylor wants black players to stick with the Professional Footballers Association

‘We don’t know those stats. If there are equal amounts, then there is a race problem somewhere, but we don’t know that, so it is just hearsay — there might only be five per cent of black people wanting those jobs. I think there is a lack of black people as managers and coaches.

‘There are so many black and ethnic minority players that may have been good enough to have been managers but have they applied for these jobs We don’t know. If they have and have not got them, why not It is either they are not good enough, or there is a race issue.’

Leading the way: Norwich's Chris Hughton is the only black manager in the Premier League

Leading the way: Norwich's Chris Hughton is the only black manager in the Premier League

What is the Rooney Rule

So why do people want a new rule about Wayne Rooney

It’s not about Wayne. It’s actually named after Dan Rooney, the owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers American Football team and the chairman of the NFL’s diversity committee.

Why’s that then

The rule was named after him because the Steelers are well known for giving African Americans senior roles at the club.

What does it mean

The Rooney Rule only currently applies to American football and requires at least one black or ethnic minority candidate to be interviewed for a head coaching or senior operation role for a team.

Has it worked

It was introduced in 2003 and within three years the number of black NFL head coaches went from four per cent to 22 per cent.

What are the figures like over here

Only four per cent of managers in the top four tiers of English football are black or from an ethnic minority.

Total clubs in the Premier and Football League: 92.

Black and ethnic minority managers in the Premier and Football League: Four — Keith Curle (Notts County), Chris Hughton (Norwich), Chris Powell (Charlton), Edgar Davids (Barnet — joint head coach).

Euro 2012: German players visit Auschwitz

German players and staff pay emotional visit to former Auschwitz concentration camp

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UPDATED:

15:06 GMT, 1 June 2012

Members of Germany's Euro 2012 squad made an emotional visit to the former Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland.

Team manager Oliver Bierhoff, head coach Joachim Low, team captain Philipp Lahm and Polish-born players Miroslav Klose and Lukas Podolski were among the group to make the trip.

Signature: Oliver Bierhoff, Germany staff member, signs a book of condolence

Signature: Oliver Bierhoff, Germany staff member, signs a book of condolence

Respects: Joachim Loew places a candle

Respects: Joachim Loew places a candle

Podolski

Lahm

Visitors: Lukas Podolski (left) and Phillip Lahm were two of the players who came to Auschwitz

Following Thursday's 2-0 victory over Israel in Leipzig, the players and senior officials from the German Football Association paid their respects at the Auschwitz-Birkenau memorial site, placing a wreath and writing in the book of remembrance.

DFB president Wolfgang Niersbach said: 'When trying to come to terms with this cruel and inhuman chapter of German history, we're called upon to recall a phrase by the former German Federal President, Richard von Weizsacker, who said that “those who shut their eyes to the past, will be blind for the present”.

Observer: Loew looks at personal photos that belonged to incoming prisoners

Observer: Loew looks at personal photos that belonged to incoming prisoners

'It is our obligation and responsibility to stay alert and educate the many young players in our clubs, time and again, that anti-semitism, racism, and intolerance have no place in our society.'

Bierhoff added: '/06/01/article-0-1367075C000005DC-949_634x477.jpg” width=”634″ height=”477″ alt=”Experience: Bierhoff, Lahm and Miroslav Klose during their visit” class=”blkBorder” />

Experience: Bierhoff, Lahm and Miroslav Klose during their visit

Football agents branded "parasites" and "spivs" by furious MP

Football agents branded “parasites” and “spivs” by furious MP

Angry: Russell is unhappy with agents

Angry: Russell is unhappy with agents” involvement in the game

Football agents have been labelled “parasites” and “spivs” by Liberal Democrat MP Bob Russell.

He hit out at players’ representatives, saying their pay should be directed to different areas of the sport.

Speaking at Culture, Media and Sport questions in the Commons, the Colchester MP said: “Those parasites in the Premier League alone took 210 million out of the game in the last three years.

“Just imagine how that money could have been spent within the game, including schools football, if it was properly used instead of lining the pockets of these spivs.”

Sports Minister Hugh Robertson said a select committee report into football governance should examine the issue.

Meanwhile, he said ministers were meeting officials from the Football Association, Premier League and the Football League to discuss how to combat racism in the game.

Labour MP for Bassetlaw, John Mann, said the FA was “significantly more enlightened” than European football’s governing body UEFA, and the world game’s organisation FIFA, at tackling racism.

Mr Robertson agreed to meet an all-party committee on anti-Semitism and community groups dealing with discrimination to hear how ministers and regulators could deal with potential racism at next year’s European championship in Poland and Ukraine.