A twelve-year-old boy has been arrested by the Police over a racist message sent to Crystal Palace winger, Wilfred Zaha.
The Ivorian took to his social media page to upload several screenshots of the racist abuse he had received on the morning of the match aginst Aston Villa, alongside the caption: “Woke up to this today.”
Woke up to this today. pic.twitter.com/Zal0F96htJ
— Wilfried Zaha (@wilfriedzaha) July 12, 2020
The alleged sender of the racist message was arrested after the game by the West Midlands Police. According to the Police, the boy is from Solihull.
The Premier League recently launched a new system to allow Premier League players to report online abuse.
Everyone behind Zaha
Reacting to the incident, Palace manager Roy Hodgson in support of Zaha’s decision to go public about the abuse, said both clubs are working to identify the individual.
Aston Villa had in a statement condemned the act as well. The club further stated that it is working with the police in investigating the matter, adding that as soon as the culprit is identified, he or she would be issued a lifetime ban.
We are working with the police in investigating this extremely serious matter and when the culprit is identified AVFC will issue a lifetime ban. https://t.co/Wx5wJVA1ww
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) July 12, 2020
Palace manager Roy Hodgson, in support of Zaha, said the winger was correct to highlight the racial abuse he received on social media
“It is very saddening on the day of a game that a player wakes up to this cowardly and despicable abuse,” said Hodgson.
“I think it is right that Wilf made people aware of it; I don’t think it is something he should keep quiet about.
“I think it is very good that our club, Aston Villa, and the Premier League are doing everything they can to find out who this despicable individual is and one can only hope that they will get identified and they will get called to account and they will pay for these actions.
“There is literally no excuse; there is no excuse at all.”
The Premier League in its statement described the behavior as completely unacceptable.
“The Premier League stands alongside Wilfred Zaha in opposing this and discrimination in any form. There is No Room For Racism, anywhere.
“We will continue to support players, managers, coaches, and their family members who receive serious discriminatory online abuse.
“Through our dedicated reporting system, we can take immediate action on cases like this.”