Football: British newspapers slam racist chants directed at Yaya Toure in Moscow

British newspapers were united in their condemnation of the racist chants directed towards Manchester City's Ivorian international Yaya Toure (above) during the side's Champions League match against CSKA Moscow in the Russian capital yesterday. -- PH
British newspapers were united in their condemnation of the racist chants directed towards Manchester City's Ivorian international Yaya Toure (above) during the side's Champions League match against CSKA Moscow in the Russian capital yesterday. -- PHOTO: AP

LONDON (REUTERS) - British newspapers were united in their condemnation of the racist chants directed towards Manchester City's Ivorian international Yaya Toure during the side's Champions League match against CSKA Moscow in the Russian capital yesterday.

The incident was particularly embarrassing for Uefa, who had declared this week as Football Against Racism In Europe Action Week.

It responded by issuing a short statement saying it was "waiting for the report from match officials".

However, despite all captains wearing anti-racism armbands during this round of fixtures and the exchanging of pennants declaring No To Racism and Respect, the message appears to have been lost on some CSKA Moscow fans.

Today's Daily Mirror headline echoed Toure's post-match comments, proclaiming Shut Them Down after the midfielder called on European soccer's governing body to close the stadium perhaps for "a couple of years" until the problem is eradicated.

The Daily Telegraph said the racism issue was particularly worrying because Russia was hosting the World Cup in 2018.

The Times observed that Toure knew exactly what was being chanted at him as he was a fluent Russian speaker following his time playing in Ukraine.

Toure said he had told the referee what was happening 10 minutes into the second half, shortly after he had been fouled by a CSKA player.

City coach Manuel Pellegrini added: "There were some shouts against our player. It's a pity that they keep doing such stupid things. It's a pity for Yaya and a pity for the city, but I hope the right message can be put out."