Swansea ‘shocked and surprised’ by Facebook’s response to Yan Dhanda abuse

PA Sport Staff
·2-min read

Swansea have criticised Facebook’s response to the racist abuse experienced by Yan Dhanda.

The 22-year-old midfielder suffered the abuse following Swansea’s FA Cup defeat to Manchester City on Wednesday, becoming the latest in a long list of recent incidents of footballers receiving abuse on social media.

Facebook says the person responsible will only be temporarily blocked from sending Instagram messages and not have their account shut down.

That was greeted with shock by Swansea, who issued a statement they say is backed by the EFL.

Swansea City v Blackburn Rovers – Sky Bet Championship – Liberty Stadium
Swansea’s Yan Dhanda was the subject of racial abuse (Simon Galloway/PA)

The statement said: “Swansea City is shocked and surprised by the leniency shown by Facebook towards one of their users who racially abused a member of our playing squad.

“The abhorrent level of abuse that we have witnessed this week means that once again we seek stronger action from social media companies in order to stamp this type of toxic behaviour out and we fully back the EFL’s open letter that was sent to Twitter and Facebook in light of recent events.

“It is appalling that Facebook cannot empathise more with the victim of such offensive messages and Yan Dhanda continues to have our full support at the football club as we work with South Wales Police to assist in their ongoing investigation.”

Instagram owner Facebook, responding to the Dhanda case, said this week: “We do not want racism and hate on our platforms.

“The person who sent this message has been restricted from sending messages on Instagram for a set period of time, and we will remove new accounts created to get around this restriction.

“We think it’s important people have the opportunity to learn from their mistakes but, per the new measures put in place this week, if they continue to break our rules this account will be removed.”

Dhanda responded to the racial abuse by writing on Twitter: “How can this STILL be happening in 2021? I’m so proud of who I am and representing Asians. More has to be done!#NOTORACISM”.

Manchester United players Marcus Rashford, Axel Tuanzebe, Anthony Martial and Lauren James are among those who have been the targets of racist abuse on social media, along with West Brom’s Romaine Sawyers and Chelsea defender Reece James – Lauren’s brother.

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce said on Thursday he had been made aware of social media users wishing him dead, while referee Mike Dean asked not to officiate a Premier League game this weekend after he and his family received death threats.