Jason Roberts will refuse to wear 'Kick It Out' T-shirt

 

Reading striker Jason Roberts insists he will not wear a 'Kick It Out' T-shirt for the equality group's annual week of action after the racial abuse incidents of the last year.

Roberts claims Kick It Out have not been hardline in their response to the John Terry and Luis Suarez abuse incidents.

The week of action starts today but Roberts told BBC Sport: "I find it hard to wear a T-shirt after what has happened in the last year. I won't wear one.

"I'm totally committed to kicking racism out of football but when there's a movement I feel represents the issue in the way that speaks for me and my colleagues, then I will happily support it.

"I think people feel let down by what used to be called 'Let's Kick Racism Out of Football'. People don't feel like they have been strong enough."

Kick It Out chairman Lord Ouseley said he understood Roberts' feelings.

Ouseley said: "He's not been slow in coming forward about this and I respect his views"

"I can understand his frustrations. If Kick It Out had the power to sort this out then we would have done. Sorry Jason, we don't have that kind of power."

Roberts added that the four-match ban handed to Terry for racially abusing QPR's Anton Ferdinand was too lenient.

He added: "The four-match ban was, for me, not a heavy enough sanction for what happened.

"I'm not happy. Certainly they should have given him a longer ban. The sanction is nowhere near harsh enough." Ouseley also called on Terry to make a personal apology to Ferdinand.

He told the Press Association: "A personal apology last October would have clinched it and saved everybody the pain they have gone through.

"It has been intolerable for Anton Ferdinand and his family, with the hurtful and abusive messages they have been subjected to.

"I would like to think that a personal apology would be forthcoming."

Ouseley said the week of action was not more important than ever.

"We in English football have to get our house back in order," he added.

"We have to make sure that the things that have happened in the last year do not happen again, and if they are then they are dealt with in a matter of days rather than taking a year to resolve."

PA

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