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Football Reporting

Europa League

Slavia Prague racially abused Kamara, claims Gerrard after Rangers’ Europa League defeat

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard said midfielder Glen Kamara told him he had been racially abused by Slavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela in Thursday’s Europa League last-16 match, a claim Gerrard backed with “100 percent” confidence given the trust he has in his player.

A scuffle broke out between sides in the final five minutes after Kudela appeared to whisper something in Kamara’s ear.

The tie had already been effectively decided by that point, with Rangers down to nine men and down 3-1 on aggregate.

What did Gerrard say?

“I feel angry,” Gerrard told reporters. “It’s difficult to describe how I feel now because I know Glen and I trust him 100 per cent. It’s extremely disappointing.

“Glen Kamara to me is one of my own. I 100 per cent believe what he is saying in terms of the accusation.

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“Other players around him heard it so I will stand toe to toe with Glen Kamara and I’ll deal with this however Glen wants to deal with it. I am proud of all my players showing solidarity and from the top of this club to the bottom we stand with the players.

“This situation is over to UEFA now. I just hope it doesn’t get brushed under the carpet.

“All I can confirm is that my player tells me he was racially abused. I tried to call Glen over during the game, he didn’t come over. I was going to ask him did he want to leave the pitch and I would have backed him whatever his decision was but the players stayed on the pitch, that was their decision and the game came to a conclusion.”

How did Slavia Prague respond?

“Slavia categorically opposes the fact that Ondrej Kudela racistly insulted the players’ opponents in any way,” wrote Slavia president Jaroslav Tvrdik in a statement. “It tells us that our player was physically attacked after the match. At the request of Slavia, the case was resolved by the local police. We would like to see a detailed investigation of the whole situation by UEFA.”

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