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Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Begovic: Fines not enough to curb racism

ESPN staff

Stoke City goalkeeper Asmir Begovic believes financial penalties are not enough to prevent players from racial abuse, calling on governing bodies to enforce punishments that also impact the fans.

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Begovic, 25, told BBC Sport that match-related charges for racism would be more successful than fines.

"Financial punishments are not as big a deal to most countries, certainly to bigger FAs," Begovic said. "Maybe teams should have to forfeit games or lose points - which means everyone suffers - so people learn."

The Bosnian international claims that fans are more likely to curb their behaviour if alleged racist chanting affects their team's qualification process or league position.

The Serbian Football Federation faces further action following their Euro 2013 Under-21 playoff match against England last week with claims from England players that they were racially abused during the match.

Both Serbia and England were charged by UEFA for the scuffle that ensued at full time and despite a number of recent probes into racism in the Premier League, Begovic believes the issue is gradually facing widespread condemnation.

"Here in England the situation is very good. There are not as many incidents as there may be in other countries but hopefully they can get rid of it all together," he said. "It is difficult to handle these situations because people in other countries may not be as educated about the racism issue as they are in this country and may not see it as such a foul thing as we do."

Former England defender Sol Campbell also sees docking points as the only way forward.

"There are fines, but I think points have to be taken," Campbell told BBC Radio 5. "If you keep knocking six, nine points off, they will start to wake up."

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