'Racism has no place in our game' – Arsenal hit out at 'unacceptable' Osei-Tutu abuse

The Gunners defender – on loan with VfL Bochum – was left in tears following an incident against St.Gallen on Tuesday night

Arsenal have hit out at the ‘unacceptable racial abuse’ that Jordi Osei-Tutu suffered during his debut for German side VfL Bochum on Tuesday night.

The Gunners right-back is on loan with Bochum and was making his first start for his new club during a pre-season friendly against Swiss side St. Gallen.

But he was left distraught following an incident with an opposing player just before half-time and left the pitch in tears, before eventually coming back out to continue the game.

The video of the incident, which shows Osei-Tutu inconsolable on the pitch, has been spread on social media and Arsenal, Bochum and the player himself have now responded by issuing joint statements.

Arsenal said: “Last night Jordi Osei-Tutu received unacceptable racial abuse playing for VfL Bochum during a pre-season friendly match against Swiss club St Gallen.

“We are working closely with Bochum and Jordi and we are giving him our full support. 

“Racism has no place in our game and we do not tolerate any form of discrimination.”

Osei-Tutu joined Bochum last week and will spend the full 2019-2020 campaign on loan with the Bundesliga 2 outfit.

A statement released by the German club said: “Jordi Osei-Tutu was unfortunately the victim of a racist incident during a pre-season friendly between FC St. Gallen and VfL Bochum 1848.

“VfL Bochum 1848, Jordi Osei-Tutu and his parent club, Arsenal, are in close coordination to deal with this incident. Both clubs, VfL and Arsenal, stand by Jordi Osei-Tutu and assure him of their full support.

“We do not tolerate any form of discrimination. Racism has no place in our game.”

Osei-Tutu was inundated with messages of support on social media following the incident on Tuesday night, both from team-mates and from fans who had seen the video.

And in a statement of his own, the 20-year-old defender admitted he was left stunned at the treatment he received from a fellow player.

“I am very disappointed about what happened,” he said.

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“No one should ever be subject to any discrimination and it is really hard to understand how a fellow professional footballer could do this.

“Arsenal and Bochum have provided great support to me and I hope that if nothing else, we can show that racism has no place within football.”

Bochum will now continue dialogue with St. Gallen over the incident in a bid to ensure further action is taken.

But a statement released by the Swiss club suggests they do not feel any further action is necessary, following talks with the player involved in the incident.

“St. Gallen would like to make it clear the club condemns every form of racism or discrimination,” said the statement. “Any such behaviour will be punished.

“Our players treat each other with respect regardless of origins, skin colour or religion. The player who was involved in the incident has assured the club’s hierarchy that he stuck to the club’s philosophy in yesterday’s game against Bochum.”

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