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Jude Bellingham comes to question the football scene regarding the racist abuse of Black footballers in the 21st century. The 18-year-old midfielder of Borussia Dortmund and England International expressed how disappointed he is with the bias against colored individuals in the sports scene.
“After (the) majority of games, I’ll get a racist message in my Instagram inbox.”
“The first couple of times I remember putting on my story and I received quite a good reaction in terms of people saying that they’re with me.” Bellingham says he is glad that many sympathize with him.
“There’s not a single job in the world where you deserve to be criticized with racism,” adds Bellingham. “I’ll never forget, that was the first time I properly got a batch of messages.”
According to Bellingham, there are ‘inconsistencies with the governing body of the sport treat cases, more particularly how indifferent it is with cases that involve Black footballers.
Last December, the young football star was fined $45,000 by Germany’s Football Association for his comments to a referee. His act was described by the body as “unsportsmanlike behavior.”
“The club were quick to send someone to message me and make sure I was alright and I really appreciate that. Had teammates that messaged me, of course, family members.”
“I didn’t really receive anything from the DFB or FA or anything like that. And I always kind of compare it to when I said the thing about the referee in December.
“They were very quick to get into contact to give me my fine, give me my punishment, kind of make it a big drama in the media.
“I’ve learned from that. I know what I can and can’t say. I know that, you know, sometimes I have to control my emotion better,” he told reporters.
“But, you know, when you give that more energy than the situation that I was, I felt like I was going through … maybe we are alone and maybe they’re not interested, maybe they don’t care. And maybe it is down to me and down to us to work independently to get our message out.”
In the latest edition of the FIFA Disciplinary Code, racist behavior and words are not treated lightly. Players or officials found to be violating the rules mentioned in the code could be punished with suspension, fines, points deduction, forfeiture, expulsion from a tournament, relegation to a lower division, among others.
His support system
Bellingham says that despite these issues, he still has his greatest support system – people he could count on since he was born.
“I speak a lot about my parents and the people that have kind of brought me up in football and not just in football, but in life as well,” he said.
“My mom, my dad are two huge role models of mine because of the way they’ve obviously carried themselves, the things that they’ve had to face in their own journeys.”
“She’s always given me a lot of lessons on how I’ll be perceived by other people sometimes because of the color of my skin, sometimes the way that we’re kind of stereotyped.”
“I think for her to do a lot of the stuff that she’s done just to make sure me and my brother never have to want for anything,” he added. “I can’t put into words how much it means to me.
“I’ve got a Black woman that I live with every day and I see the way she carries herself,” he adds. “My mom is certainly one of my heroes off the pitch, if not the biggest one.”
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