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Group of Chelsea 'fans' filmed abusing a black man on the Paris metro
The club has condemned the footage and pledged to support any criminal action
Chelsea was in Paris for a Champions League match against Paris Saint-Germain
A British football team has vowed to support any criminal action brought against its fans who were filmed as they physically stopped a black man from getting on the Paris metro Tuesday.
The amateur video obtained by The Guardian, and posted on its website, shows the man make multiple attempts to board a train at Richelieu-Drouot station, only to be pushed away each time by a group of passengers.
The group, who appear to be Chelsea supporters, can then be heard chanting: “We’re racist, we’re racist and that’s the way we like it.”
Chelsea were in France to play Paris Saint-Germain in a Champions League first-leg tie - Europe’s premier football tournament – which finished 1-1.
Read: Paris Saint-Germain holds Chelsea
“Such behavior is abhorrent and has no place in football or society,” said statement released by Chelsea Wednesday.
“We will support any criminal action against those involved in such behavior, and should evidence point to the involvement of Chelsea season ticket holders or members the club will take the strongest possible action against them including banning orders.”
Both French and British police have said they will analyze the footage.
“Police measures were deployed last night for the football match in order to prevent any violence. None occurred,” French law enforcement told CNN.
“The police department only found out about this incident once the video was uploaded on the internet.
“The prefect then wished for the Chelsea supporters to be identified. The Paris prosecutor has opened an investigation and is now in charge.”
A Metropolitan Police statement added: “We will, of course, assist French authorities to identify the people involved and support them in any action they choose to take.”
UEFA, the body which governs European football, said it was appalled by the footage, but as it occurred outside of the stadium it could not take any punitive action.
British expatriate Paul Nolan, who CNN was not immediately able to contact, says he filmed the incident on his phone at Richelieu-Drouot station.
“The doors were open and I could see and hear that a lot of chanting was going on,” Nolan told The Guardian. “It looked like it was quite aggressive so I just took out by phone to record it.
“He was obviously completely shocked when they pushed him off. I don’t think he realised who they were. He then tried to get on again and got pushed off a second time.”
Sepp Blatter, the president of football’s global governing body FIFA, also took to Twitter to register his disapproval.
“I also condemn the actions of a small group of Chelsea fans in Paris,” tweeted Blatter. “There is no place for racism in football!”
This is not the first racism allegation to be leveled against the London club in recent times.
In 2012, team captain John Terry was banned for four matches and fined $356,000 for racially abusing Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.
Terry was, however, found not guilty of any criminal wrongdoing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in July of the same year.