Cardiff City have pulled back from making a complaint to the FA after Cardiff striker Michael Chopra claimed he had suffered racial abuse during their ill-tempered draw. Earlier Cardiff manager Dave Jones had claimed
“Something’s been said, something which we’re trying to stamp out. We’ll see if the authorities deal with it”.
Chopra, who is half-Indian, alleged Palace captain Shaun Derry had called him a racist name and had to be dragged away from Derry after the row triggered ugly scenes at the final whistle.
But Palace firmly rejected the claims and said they:
“Would welcome any FA enquiry into racist comments allegedly made by one of our players.
Crystal Palace are a multi-ethnic club and are proud of its history in this respect. We take great exception at the outrageous allegations being levelled at us by Cardiff City players and management.
We would like to make it known that we are 100 per cent supportive in this matter of all of our players and definitive in our belief that none of them would make any racist comments.
As a club we are fully behind the Kick Racism Out of Football campaign, as are all of our players”.
Cardiff have released their own official statement signalling they will not be taking any action over the matter. Cardiff's statement said:
“Following the publicity that surrounded comments that were allegedly directed towards our player Michael Chopra after last Saturday's match at the Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff City football club wish to draw a line under this issue and to look forward to tomorrow's match against Coventry City”.
After the match Cardiff striker Jay Bothroyd claimed team-mate Chopra tried to confront Palace midfielder Derry after his alleged slur. Bothroyd, who had gone off earlier due to injury, said:
“I wasn’t there but I spoke to Chops and he said one of their boys made a racist comment to him.
That’s not acceptable. If you call someone a racist name people are going to react, and that’s happened at the end. We were wearing T-shirts before the game that said “Show Racism The Red Card” and then something like that happens.
It’s not a good example to set for Palace or football”.
It is understood the referee was unaware of any racism and will not, therefore, make reference to that in his report.