Inside Lines: Campaign to strip Israel of Under-21 event over racism campaign against racism

 

At the same time as Tottenham Hotspur players were again enduring appalling racist abuse in Italy on Thursday night, a protest group called Football Beyond Borders were holding a meeting in London calling for this summer's European Under-21 tournament in Israel to be moved, or boycotted.

The events were supposedly unconnected, though one irony is that the campaign is publicly backed by a former Spurs striker, the Mali-born Muslim Frédéric Kanouté, 35, who now plays in China.

Stuart Pearce's England team are due to play Israel in a group match on 11 June at Jerusalem's Teddy Stadium where, according to FBB, "there is a supporters group who embody a political voice in Israeli society which is shaped by its Jewish fanaticism, aversion to Muslims and its penchant to treat Arabs and other ethnic minorities within the country as inferior". They add: "There is clearly a widespread belief that Israel should not be allowed to host the tournament, considering its shocking human rights record and its increasingly systematic discrimination of Palestinians."

While a full-blown demo march is planned in London for 24 May, Uefa's president, Michel Platini, insists the tournament will not be moved but is believed to have privately asked the English FA to be on standby to host it should the situation in Gaza deteriorate further.

Olympians strike gold

Jessica Ennis is hardly off the box these days. Not displaying her skills as the world's supreme all-round athlete but filling copious television commercial breaks by advertising a health-insurance company and a Spanish bank, among other things.

According to sports-business experts, Ennis's enduring appeal as the brightest star in the London 2012 Olympic galaxy will earn her at least £6 million on the road to Rio 2016. Which is why Ennis, named World Sportswoman of the Year at last week's Laureus Awards in Rio, can afford to pay her coach, Tony Minichiello, out of her own pocket now that he is no longer employed by UK Athletics.

Ennis is not alone in getting a lucrative commercial break. Mo Farah is hard on her heels, while the now-retired swimmer Rebecca Adlington is in the £20,000-a-time bracket as an after-dinner speaker. The boxing gold medallist Nicola Adams's ever-beaming features dominate buses nationwide, urging us to drink more milk. Gymnast Beth Tweddle and Adams's Olympic champion ring-mate Luke Campbell can put the champagne on ice after finishing first and third respectively in ITV's Dancing on Ice. Both reputedly collected six-figure sums, as did Britain's other gymnastics high-flyer Louis Smith, who took the top prize in the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing last December.

Warren's counterpunch

Inside the ropes, boxing may be about hooks and crosses, but outside them it's more swings and roundabouts. This time last week Frank Warren had lost one star, George Groves, to Sky-backed rival Eddie Hearn and was about to witness another, world champion Ricky Burns, defecting to the same Matchroom stable.

In an exclusive interview with The Independent on Sunday Warren vowed to hit back – and tomorrow he will confirm his BoxNation TV channel have not only secured substantial new funding but also the prized ring return of the world's No 1 fighter, Floyd Mayweather Jnr, against Robert Guerrero in Las Vegas on 4 May.

Moreover, we hear a rapprochement with Amir Khan, may be imminent, with the former world light-welterweight champion's make-or-break homecoming bout against the Mexican Julio Diaz in Sheffield on 27 April also likely to be exclusively on BoxNation.

Meanwhile, Warren has issued a writ against Burns claiming £300,000 damages, almost half the Scot's total earnings under his promotion.

a.hubbard@independent.co.uk

Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths
Life and Style
life
Sport
Brendan Rodgers
football The Liverpool manager will be the first option after Pep Guardiola
News
Amazon misled consumers about subscription fees, the ASA has ruled
news
Arts and Entertainment
Myanna Buring, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Russell Tovey in 'Banished'
TV Jimmy McGovern tackles 18th-century crime and punishment
Arts and Entertainment
Paul Whitehouse as Herbert
arts + ents
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Lettings and Sales Negotiator - OTE £46,000

£16000 - £46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Worker - Reading and Surrounding Areas

£9 - £13 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a s...

Recruitment Genius: Key Sales Account Manager - OTE £35,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn