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Thai football referee suspended over racist slur

BANGKOK (AFP) Thai football authorities said Wednesday they have suspended a referee accused of using a racist slur to a Thai-Ghananian player during a third-division game.

Prachinburi City FC player Abdul Qadiri Hamit, 22, said the referee made the remarks to him during a match on Sunday, local media reported.

“The Football Association has suspended the referee from all competitions,” the Thai FA said in a statement.

Prachinburi City FC player Abdul Qadiri Hamit. PHOTO: Prachinburi City FC

The suspension will remain in place while a “fact-finding investigation” is carried out, the statement said.

Hamit’s club expressed their support in a statement reported by local media earlier this week.

“We oppose racism, insults, or insults based on race, religion, or ethnicity,” Prachinburi City said.

The referee is accused of using the Thai equivalent of the N-word, and the club said it was “not the first time” the player had faced such remarks on the pitch.

On his personal Facebook page, Hamit posted: “Since you are a referee, you should be calling me with a better word.”

Top international players including England and Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford and Vinicius Junior of Brazil and Real Madrid have repeatedly faced racial slurs both on and off the pitch in recent years.