The manager of a Blackburn football team says he has had little support and “the whole system needs changing from top to bottom” after his players were subjected to alleged racist abuse from an opposition player during a match.

Blackburn Elite play in the Blackburn & District Combination League and on Saturday, February 18, were playing a league fixture against Accrington-based Globe Bullough Park Reserves at Pleasington Playing Fields.

Khalid Esat, manager of Blackburn Elite, has alleged one of the Globe Bullough players who “had a mouth on him” was consistently making remarks such as ‘go back to your own sport’ and ‘what are you doing in this country?’.

Lancashire Telegraph: Blackburn Elite warming up before one of their gamesBlackburn Elite warming up before one of their games (Image: Khalid Esat)

The player was sin binned just before half time and was sent to the side of the pitch where Mt Esat and the rest of his squad were stood and is said to have continued to make the hurtful comments.

Late in the second half, Mr Esat said even his own teammates had had enough of the player and asked their manager to substitute him.

As he was leaving the pitch in the 84th minute, Blackburn Elite players cheered only for him to then allegedly turn around and mock the Muslim praying position.

Mr Esat was annoyed with the way it was handled by the referee, saying the official had turned around and said he had not seen or heard any of the incidents, before then abandoning the game with just a few minutes left.

Lancashire Telegraph: Blackburn Elite players were allegedly subjected to racist abuse during their game against Globe Bullough Park ReservesBlackburn Elite players were allegedly subjected to racist abuse during their game against Globe Bullough Park Reserves (Image: Khalid Esat)

Mr Esat said: “We were playing the game and it was a very good game.

“There were no dirty challenges, there was nobody kicking off. But there was one player throughout the game who just had a mouth on him.

“He got a sin bin just before half-time for mouthing off to the referee. He was sin binned on our touchline and he’s just mouthing off to our lads.

“I said to them to leave it, don’t get involved, it’s not worth it, because the last thing we want is us getting reported and us getting a fine.

“His players got a whiff of it, and they got fed up, so eventually they told the manager to take him off. In the 84th minute his manager eventually decided to make a substitution.

“The manager and the captain both messaged me after. I know the captain because he used to play for me a couple of seasons ago. He was absolutely disgusted with this one player’s behaviour.

“I have put a report in to the Lancashire FA and the league mentioning that the team weren’t the ones at fault, it was just this one individual.”


Wayne Roberts, Globe Bullough Park chair and manager of the reserves side, said: “All I can tell you at this given time is that there was an incident. I’m not 100 per cent sure if it was racist because I didn’t hear it myself.

“There is an internal club investigation and we’re leaving everything in the hands of the Lancashire FA and the Blackburn Combination League.

“There is an apology from Blackburn Elite [on Twitter] for dragging our name into it because it isn’t the club, it isn’t the team, it’s just one individual.

“We are going to help Blackburn Elite with everything we can and we will do whatever the Lancashire FA require us to.”

When asked for a response to the incident, a Lancashire FA spokesperson said: “We can confirm we’ve received a report in relation to this fixture and we are currently investigating.”

Despite reporting it to the Lancashire FA, Mr Esat feels they have had little support and wants to see changes in how these situations are handled.

He said: “Lancashire FA have offered support to me but we had 11 players on the pitch. They haven’t offered it to them.

“What education are they going to give to this player? Because I think he’s the one that needs educating. The whole system needs to change from top to bottom.”