UEFA has come under intense criticism from the English FA, English players as well as anti-racism group Kick it Out for its “paltry” response to the racist abuse and violence suffered by England’s Under-21 players in Serbia in October.
The punishment handed out by the European governing body amounted to a $105,000 fine and a one-game ban for fans at Serbia’s next Under-21 game. In addition, four Serbian players were suspended for four and two games, while two members of its coaching staff were suspended for two years. Two England players, Thomas Ince and Steven Caulker, were also handed two-game suspensions.
"Let's be clear, racism is unacceptable in any form and should play no part in football,” said FA general secretary Alex Horne. “The scenes were deplorable and we do not believe the sanction sends a strong enough message."
Lord Herman Ouseley, chairman of anti-racism group Kick it Out, said: "Kick It Out shares the concerns of many in football that abuse aimed at black players isn't taken seriously enough. This is a paltry slap on the wrist and again we haven't seen decisive action from Uefa."