FA: Crouch won't face racism probe over comments

December 22, 2007

Liverpool striker Peter Crouch will almost certainly escape any disciplinary action from the Football Association for remarks that have been dubbed 'potentially racist'.

Crouch was dismissed in Wednesday night's Carling Cup quarter-final defeat for a lunge at Chelsea's Nigerian midfielder Mikel John Obi.

Mikel's representatives, the Sport Entertainment and Media (SEM) Group, responded angrily following comments made by Crouch that foreign players were prone to diving.

They called on the authorities to deal with the matter as a racist issue.

But an FA spokesman said: 'We would certainly not see Peter Crouch's comments as being racist.

'He is unlikely to face any sort of disciplinary action because of them.'

Crouch said on Thursday: 'What I'm thinking is if you go in on Frank Lampard or John Terry, would they roll around like Obi Mikel did? I don't think they would have done.

'Would someone like Carra [Jamie Carragher] have gone down like that? I think it's safe to say that he wouldn't.

'Foreign players have brought a lot to our game but that's something you don't want to see. I didn't catch him but he's gone down like he's been shot.'

Liverpool are understood to be unhappy with Chelsea's demands for action against Crouch, who is far from the first football personality to suggest foreign players were more prone to diving.

The FA believe they cannot bring Crouch to book for expressing an opinion - and it was not a personal attack on Mikel.

SEM do not intend to let the matter rest and told The Sun: 'SEM feel the comments were potentially racist to all foreign players, not just black or African ones.

'We are intending to speak to Trevor Phillips at the Equality and Human Rights Commission on Monday.

'We hope football's governing bodies, who are meant to be committed to stamping out racism issues, will also get involved.'

Mikel has also denied he is a play actor.

'There is nothing to say to Crouch. All I know is that I am not a diver and will not start doing that now,' he said.

'Foreign players bring a lot to the league. That's why there are so many here at the moment.

'There is Didier Drogba, Michael Essien, Cristiano Ronaldo and Dimitar Berbatov, amongst other top players.

'They make the league very competitive and we cannot all be bad just because one player feels so.'