Monitoring group says racism on rise in English soccer

LONDON (AP) — English soccer’s anti-racism monitors say cases of discrimination have risen for the seventh straight year.

The Kick It Out group says it tracked 581 cases of discrimination in the 2018-19 season, compared to 520 the year before. The figures include games from the top professional leagues to grassroots youth level, as well as some incidents on social media.

Racist incidents made up 65 percent of total reports. The sharpest rise was in cases of discrimination based on religion — including anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim incidents — with 63 cases noted compared to 36 the season before.

Kick It Out’s chief executive Roisin Wood says “football reflects the society it is played and watched in and these figures are sadly not surprising.”

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