A man who racially abused Brentford striker Ivan Toney on social media has been banned from every stadium in the country in a landmark ruling.
Antonio Neill, 24, pleaded guilty to sending an offensive message in October last year and in court in Newcastle yesterday was handed a four-month suspended sentence.
Neill was also given a three-year football banning order - the first of its kind to be issued under new legislation introduced last year for online hate crimes.
In a statement, Brentford said: “We are pleased to see the Antonio Neill case resolved and that Northumbria Police pursued this to a conclusion.
“Court appearances set a strong precedent for anyone else who commits hate crimes and it is our hope that sentences increase in severity until this sort of crime is eradicated.
“Ivan Toney has been subject to sickening racist abuse on a regular basis, and we want to see tough action taken against anyone found guilty of such abuse.
“The club firmly believes there is no place for racial abuse in football and we continue to support and implement a zero-tolerance policy towards discriminatory behaviour of any kind.
“All authorities have their role to play in this and we, again, call upon the social media companies to make their platforms safe for all participants and to remove all hateful content.”