British Asians, Overt Racism and Islamophobia in English Football

By Daniel Kilvington and John Price.

Published by The Sport Collection

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This research will critically examine overt racism and Islamophobia in grassroots football and offer policy recommendations on how to combat these issues. Thus, the work will begin by analysing the multiple forms of racism that permeate modern British sport and wider society. Following a brief methodology whereby empirical work will be discussed, we shall explore British Asian footballers’ encounters with overt forms of racism. Long’s (2000) research illustrated that there appears to be a "denial of racism" within local sport. However, this work uncovers that British Asian footballers experience racial discrimination regularly; this cannot be denied. The multiple oral testimonies emphasise the shocking incidents that British Asian players have had to endure in recent years. Although British Asians have been somewhat criticised for participating in separatist "all-Asian" footballing environments (leagues, teams, tournaments), can we really criticise these players for competing in these structures if overt racism is present in mainstream environments?

Keywords: Race, Racism, British Asian, Exclusion, Football

The International Journal of Sport and Society, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp.169-180. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 463.256KB).

Dr. Daniel Kilvington

Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sunderland, Sunderland, UK

Dr. Daniel Kilvington lectures in Media and Culture and Journalism at the University of Sunderland. He was awarded his PhD in January 2013 following three years of research into the exclusion of British Asians from English professional football. Dr Kilvington has delivered conference papers worldwide at Universities such as Melbourne and Vienna as well as Cambridge. He is co-author of ‘Race’, Racism and Sports Journalism, published by Routledge; while his new co-authored book, which examines racism and social media, is set for publication in 2014. His research interests are ‘race’, racism, identities, migration and social media.

Dr. John Price

Senior Lecturer, Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sunderland, Sunderland, UK

Dr. John Price, a former journalist, is currently a senior lecturer of journalism and a programme leader for sports journalism at the University of Sunderland. He is co-author of the recent Race, Racism and Sports Journalism, published by Routledge. His research interests include constructions of race in the sports media, issues of diversity in journalism, and the impacts of social media on sport. His forthcoming publications examine the influence of Twitter on football and its reporting in the media. His PhD thesis and previous publications have analysed the production practices of journalists in reporting the EU.