Bernard: Blatter views show no understanding

Former Newcastle defender Olivier Bernard has criticised Sepp Blatter in the wake of the FIFA president's controversial comments regarding racism.

The 75-year-old claimed that racism was not a problem in football, and that any issues relating to racial abuse on the pitch should be settled with a handshake at full-time.

Former full-back Bernard, who is now working with ‘Show Racism The Red Card', has reacted furiously Blatter's dismissive comments.

“I really couldn’t believe it, for somebody sitting at the top of an organisation it shows no understanding,” Bernard told

“To say 'just shake hands and forget about it', why would you forget someone that calls you these names? It’s not like an injury, you forget that because you get better. Words can hurt and they stay in your mind.”

Bernard, who also also spent time with Southampton and Rangers, said he too has been subject to racial insults during his playing days.

“I heard a lot of comments when I was playing, but, like a lot of people, I said nothing. I just wanted to play football and I thought it was part of my job,” he said.

“We need to educate everybody; the children, the adults - we need to go round the country and educate so that when these young people grow up they understand what they’re saying."

By Kris Heneage