I would like to say that it doesn’t sit well and I’m not happy that our club and any member of our first-team squad are accused with any alleged racism, says AFC Croydon Athletic boss Kevin Rayner

Friday 03rd January 2020

AFC CROYDON ATHLETIC manager Kevin Rayner says the player who has been accused of alleged racism during their abandoned game against Fisher last weekend feels upset over the allegations made against him and the club.

AFC Croydon Athletic were 3-1 up against Fisher at Mayfield Stadium, before Fisher boss Ajay Ashanike walked his players off the pitch and the game was abandoned in the 58th minute.

Abbas Agoro, Nahum Green (penalty) and Emmanuel Oloyede scored for the home side during the first half, while Thomas Chambers scored for Fisher to equalise on the half-hour mark.

Both club’s have issued statements on the matter and Rayner expressed his concerns over the alleged incident, which made the national news.

“I’ve seen a number of reports and stories on social media concerning our game last week with Fisher FC,” said Rayner.

“Myself and the players’ are frustrated that we can’t say too much as The FA will investigate the matter fully.

“However, I would like to say that it doesn’t sit well and I’m not happy that our club and any member of our first-team squad are accused with any alleged racism.

“For the record, everyone at the club is proud of our teams and from the under 10s right through to the first team our footballers are representative of the area we are based in and the first team squad is a team of local players.

“The player accused of the alleged racism is black as were the majority of our starting eleven from our diverse squad on the day.

“We totally condemn racism and is something we will continue to fight against at our club.

“The player accused is upset at the allegations against him and the club. We will wait to see how The FA deal with the situation. I can’t comment any further on this matter.

“It’s sad that a good game of football had to end that way.”

AFC Croydon Athletic sit in the bottom four in the Sea Pioneer Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division table with 17 points from their 16 league outings.

“Our performances have improved over the last month and after beating Erith Town, we would have picked up the three points up last Saturday had the game finished,” added Rayner.

“We move on to a good month of league fixtures with two cup games, Chatham in the Challenge Cup and then in the Surrey Senior Cup against my old side Guildford City, where we had a successful period winning two championships and it will be the first time I’ve faced them in a competitive fixture since.”

The Rams welcome Erith & Belvedere to Mayfield Stadium tomorrow, the side immediately above them in the league table with 18 points from their 19 league games.”

Owen Jones’ side pulled off an impressive 5-2 home win over Glebe at Park View Road last time out.

“This will be another tough game as most fixtures are in this division and both sides need to get some points on the board,” said Rayner.

“They had a good win last week and will look to continue that form.

“We have a good squad that has been underperforming and inconsistent but have shown signs of improving considerably last month and hopefully we can keep the good performances going through this month and look to see a good end to the season.”

Jon Palluccio and Green are the Rams' leading goalscorers with six goals each, while Kam Pope-Campbell has notched nine for the Deres.

Visit AFC Croydon Athletic’s website:  www.afccroydonathletic.co.uk

AFC Croydon Athletic  v  Erith & Belvedere
Sea Pioneer Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Saturday 4 January 2020
Kick Off 3:00pm
at Mayfield Stadium, off Mayfield Road, Thornton Heath, Surrey CR7 6DN


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