London: The demand for the resignation of Fifa president Sepp Blatter has increased after he claimed that there is no problem with racism in football and that those targeted should just shake hands with their abusers.
Blatter provoked a stinging rebuke from anti-racism campaigners and players for his comments.
SunSport columnist Chris Kamara said: “Enough is enough. He has to go. He has overstepped the mark this time. It has to be resignation. He has never been in the position of being abused for the colour of his skin.
"People can`t be as ignorant as him and stick their heads in the sand. People do say things in the heat of the moment. But you can`t brush that under the carpet with a handshake. You have to take action."
England vice-captain Rio Ferdinand, whose brother Anton was allegedly racially abused by John Terry, was another outraged by Blatter’s comments, The Sun reports.
Rio said: “Tell me I have just read Sepp Blatter’s comments on racism in football wrong. If not, I am astonished."
Ex-Liverpool striker Stan Collymore said: “Mr Blatter, your comments about racism are ill thought out and condescending in the extreme. You should resign.”
Danny Lynch, from the FA’s anti-racism Kick It Out campaign, said: “These comments are worryingly out of touch. Shaking hands to compensate for a racial slur is not what the game has signed up to.”
Blatter, speaking to TV channel, said when asked whether football has a race problem: “I would deny it. There is no racism. Maybe one of the players has a word or a gesture, which is not correct. But the one affected by that should say that ‘This is a game’.
“We are in a game and, at the end of the game, we shake hands. And this can happen because we have worked so hard against racism and discrimination.”