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Rabbi Matondo criticises Instagram after online racial abuse

Rabbi Matondo criticises Instagram after online racial abuse
© Reuters
The pair suffered social media abuse after Wales' friendly victory over Mexico.

Wales winger Rabbi Matondo has criticised Instagram after he and team-mate Ben Cabango were racially abused online following the friendly win over Mexico.

Stoke loanee Matondo and Swansea defender Cabango both started Wales’ 1-0 victory at the Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday night.

Matondo wrote on Twitter: “And it continues… another week of @instagram doing absolutely nothing about racial abuse.

Wales v USA – International Friendly – Liberty Stadium
Wales winger Rabbi Matondo has hit out at Instagram after being racially abused online (David Davies/PA)

“My insta will get taken down if I post any clips from my games though… #priorities”

The Football Association of Wales says it is “disgusted” by the racial abuse directed towards their players.

“The FAW are in dialogue with South Wales Police to ensure this kind of abhorrent behaviour is reported and investigated,” said a statement on Twitter.

“The FAW joins other national associations and clubs in urging social media platforms and regulatory authorities to take stronger, more effective and urgent action against this despicable behaviour.”

Swansea offered their “unequivocal” support to Cabango.

“As a football club, we are appalled by this. No-one should have to endure this type of abuse,” said Swansea city chief executive Julian Winter.

“Ben is representing his country, he is a proud Welshman and it is a proud moment for he and his family.

“We will support Ben unequivocally on this matter and back him in every way possible.”

The Wales pair join a growing list of black players who have been subjected to online abuse in recent weeks.

Manchester United quartet Anthony Martial, Axel Tuanzebe, Marcus Rashford and Fred have all been targeted, with the latter saying “we cannot feed that culture” after being racially abused last weekend.

AC Milan v Manchester United – UEFA Europa League – Round of Sixteen – Second Leg – San Siro
Brazilian midfielder Fred was targeted for online racial abuse after Manchester United’s recent FA Cup defeat at Leicester (Fabrizio Carabelli/PA)

Arsenal’s former France forward Thierry Henry has described racism on social media as “too toxic to ignore” and disabled all of his accounts on Saturday following the recent instances on the platform.

Earlier this month, the UK’s football policing lead Detective Chief Constable Mark Roberts said the response of social media companies in assisting the police to identify abusers has been “woeful”.

In relation to the abuse the Wales players received, a Facebook company spokesman said: “We don’t want this type of abuse on Instagram and have removed the accounts that sent these messages to Ben Cabango and Rabbi Matondo this weekend.

“We recently announced that we’ll take tougher action when we become aware of people breaking our rules in DMs. This work is ongoing and we are committed to doing more.

“We also know these problems are bigger than us, so are working with the industry, government and others to collectively drive societal change through action and education.”

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