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Palace boss Hodgson calls for government help to combat racism through education

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson believes education is the way to prevent racism at football matches.

Allegations of racist abuse towards Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger marred the Blues’ 2-0 win at Tottenham on Sunday, when the Germany defender claimed he was subjected to monkey chants.

Asked on Tuesday, ahead of his club’s own London derby against West Ham on Boxing Day, whether there was anything the clubs could do, Hodgson said: “I think it’s a social issue and unfortunately we get it more in football than others.

“Wherever you’re going to get 30-to-50,000 people assemble, you can’t guarantee that there aren’t people in there who are racist and will use the opportunity to show that they’re racist.

“But clubs have got to keep working at it and keep doing the best they possibly can, and the one thing clubs can do – and I think they do – is to make certain that anyone who is found supposedly supporting their club or buying tickets to support their club are guilty of racism have got to be banned, and banned from coming into the ground, banned for life perhaps.

“I think education is the answer, and that’s something which is a government issue – the need to educate people better and make certain that we eliminate racism as well as we can.

“But for me the worst incidents of racism in football definitely is when it happens on the field of play and a player is guilty of making another racist remark to another, and that is definitely down to us.”

The Eagles boss added: “Some of the suggestions are quite draconian and we will have to think about the repercussions and if teams are walking off left, right and centre it will certainly give the Football Association and the Premier League plenty of things to think about.”