A full investigation into Mark Phillips' reason for being at the Democratic Football Lads Alliance march in London is currently underway
West Ham United have suspended a youth team coach while they investigate the circumstances behind his attendance at a march organised by the Democratic Football Lads Alliance (DFLA), which was marred by violence.
Accused of Islamophobia and racism by its critics, the group marched through central London on Saturday to protest against what it’s Facebook page listed as ‘returning jihadists, veterans treated like traitors, thousands of AWOL migrants’, light sentences for paedophiles and an ‘epidemic of gang and knife crime’.
In a series of posts on his Twitter feed, which he has now protected, Phillips said he attended the march and then defended the group against claims it is “far right” and was to blame for violence with the police and anti-fascism protesters on Saturday.
These tweets were forwarded to football’s anti-discrimination charity Kick It Out on Monday and it passed them on to the Football Association, as Phillips is a “participant in the game”.
'EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF'Eric Dier reveals what Ramos said to him after crunching tackle
Warbs returnFormer Rangers manager in line for surprise Premier League job
PROBLEMSAll 18 players injured in internationals, including Liverpool and Arsenal stars
Wonderful WilsonWatch the Wales goal Liverpool fans have been raving about
franco timeWest Ham renew interest in Argentina international after reported summer bid
BIG BREAKTHROUGHTottenham hoping to finally open new stadium to the public this weekend
gossipWest Ham 'set aside £20m as they prepare bid for ex-Premier League ace'
aliss-not-onKlopp will not be happy with what this Liverpool ace did on international duty
As Phillips does not appear to have broken any laws, the case was passed on to his club, which took the decision to suspend him on Tuesday.
In a statement, a Kick It Out spokesman said: “We can confirm we’ve received a report about a West Ham coach claiming to have attended the DFLA rally. We have passed it on to the club and are liaising with them about the issue.”
In a statement, a spokesperson for the east Londoners said: “West Ham United is an inclusive football club. Regardless of gender, age, race, ability, religion or sexual orientation, every supporter within our diverse fanbase is warmly welcomed at London Stadium, free to enjoy watching their team play football without fear, discrimination or abuse.
“We have a zero tolerance policy to any form of violent or abusive behaviour. We continue to protect and cherish those values. And we remain committed to ensuring that every single member of the West Ham family feels safe, respected and included.”
Earlier this year, the Premier League warned its clubs against the rising influence of the DFLA’s forerunner, the Football Lads Alliance, which it said was using the game to spread Islamophobia.
The FA issued a ban to former Hammers director of player recruitment Tony Henry after comments he made about African players.
Should you block ads? Adblocker