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Racism alleged in fishy football incident

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EUAFC are embroiled in a police investigation involving allegations of racism after an incident in Neptune Fish and Chip bar.

On Monday 23 February, the police, in conjunction with the Athletics Union, hosted a meeting with the University Football Club in connection to the incident in Neptune on Wednesday 4 February. No one was cautioned or charged at the meeting.

The incident (reported in issue 635, printed on Monday 16 February) involved a group of EUAFC members, where a table was upturned.  Additional allegations have been made that there were racial elements to the incident.

The police said: “We had a report that chairs were thrown through the shop into the kitchen area. Staff were terrified. The group moved onto Timepiece where police units caught up with them.”

Inspector Tanya Youngs told Exeposé: “I can confirm the police are investigating an incident in the Neptune’s Fish and Chip bar. The purpose of the meeting with members of the  Club was to establish who was present at that incident and was fully supported by the University’s Athletic Union.  The investigation is now progressing and as the individuals involved have yet to be interviewed, I am unable to make any further comment at this stage.”

Andy Higham, AU President, did not respond to requests for comment. When asked about the incident three weeks ago, Higham replied: “Unfortunately I can’t help, as I don’t know anything about any incident at all.”

This is not the first time EUAFC have been called into question regarding their conduct. A special Exeposé report published in September found the club in breach of the Athletics Union’s code of conduct. This included “doing anything which is likely to intimidate” and encouraging others to become “unduly intoxicated.”

Following the investigation, the University cancelled the annual football Varsity match. However, all committee members have remained in their positions.

The allegations come amid the national news of Chelsea fans pushing a black man, Souleymane Sylla, off a Paris Métro train and taking part in racist chanting in the French capital.

The University of Stirling football team also attracted national attention when a film emerged of University footballers “blacked up” after watching the African Cup of Nations.

Speaking of EUAFC’s alleged actions, a spokesperson for Exeter University said: “We are unable to comment on individual cases while an investigation is ongoing. We conduct our own investigations when students are alleged to have breached the University’s code of conduct – which may lead to disciplinary action being taken.”

EUAFC have not responded to requests for comment.

Emily Leahy, News Editor

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