We must stand together; say no to Racism and Islamophobia

 

Al Manaar message to the Premier League, Football Association and Chelsea Football Club

Al Manaar Muslim Heritage & Cultural Centre is one of the closest, largest and diverse mosques and community centres closest to Chelsea Football Club. Our vision is to be a vibrant and welcoming community hub which promotes a sense of belonging, unity and pride for both Muslims and the wider community and is relevant to every household in West London.

We are proud of our ethos – focused on community with inclusion and diversity at the centre of all we do. This is why on behalf of the community we have raised our concern to the Premier League, Football Association and Chelsea Football Club to take into account racist and Islamophobic views shared about Muslims by one of the bidders – the Ricketts family – when considering the final bid for the purchase of Chelsea Football Club. Recent statements following the press around the comments from the Ricketts family have not minimised the community concern and we echo the alarm that Chelsea Supporters Trust and wider members of the football fraternity have raised.

As the local mosque in the heart of Kensington & Chelsea we would like to highlight the effect of a reported Islamophobe taking over a club with Muslim players, Muslim supporters, and wider members of the community. We are also allies in the fight against racism in football. We support the work of initiatives such as Kick It Out, seeking to fight against discrimination for everyone who plays, watches or works in football.

Islamophobia, racism and religious hate crime is sadly a constant and pernicious threat facing many ethnic minorities and British Muslims in the UK and beyond. This is why we feel it is important to at this stage raise our deep concern to the Premier League, Football Association and Chelsea Football club whilst final selection of bids is taking place.

As community representatives we are open to dialogue with the Premier League or relevant representatives.

Al Manaar Muslim Heritage & Cultural Centre – 6 April 2022

Email: [email protected]

PS. This statement is supported by the Chelsea Muslim Community Hub (CMCH), among others. CMCH covers Chelsea Riverside and is close to the stadium. Their service users and worshippers include supporters of the Chelsea Football Club.