• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Teenage player tells of day racist abuse left him in tears

A TEENAGE footballer has broken his silence on the racist taunts and chants of rival fans which left him in tears.

INSULTS: Jordan Tapping was subjected to 'monkey noises'.
INSULTS: Jordan Tapping was subjected to 'monkey noises'.

Schoolboy Jordan Tapping, who plays for East Stirlingshire, was so distressed by the abuse during the match against Peterhead his manager had to substitute him.

Tapping, 17, was forced to endure one supporter shouting "black b******" and "banana man" at him while others made monkey noises.

"Ten minutes into the second half, I started to hear monkey chants," he said. "I couldn't believe it. I was just trying to play football.

"It was a crowd of about 10 people standing behind the goal. It went on from there. One man shouted at me: 'black b******' and 'banana man'. It was really upsetting."

The youngster, a sixth-year pupil at St Mungo's High School in Falkirk, said he tried to play on and ignore the taunts but found it impossible.

"After a while I was in tears," he said. "I couldn't really concentrate on the game.

"I tried to, but the manager decided to take me off as he knew my head wasn't on the game. I appreciate what he did.

"My teammates were really angry about the abuse I had received."

Tapping was born in Walthamstow, east London, but has lived in Scotland since he moved to his mother's home town of Falkirk when he was three.

"I have lived here pretty much all of my life and I have never been racially abused before," he said. "It was a real shock. Who knows why they did it, but people should know that it is really upsetting.

"I feel that to single anyone out just because of the colour of their skin just isn't on really."

His mother Kim said: "Jordan is not one for crying. I have only seen him cry twice since he was a toddler - and both of those times were when his grandparents died.

"But these people reduced him to tears. I find it pretty disgusting. We are angry, but have had great support since it happened. We want to move on now - but we also want to show that this kind of abuse is just not acceptable."

Tapping, whose brother Callum, 20, plays for Hearts, praised the support he had received from his club and the wider footballing community, including from Peterhead fans who apologised on behalf of those responsible.

"I've been playing football since I was 10 but I've never heard anything like what I heard last Saturday," he said. "My family, friends and teammates have been great and I really appreciate that.

"I also want to thank all the fans and everyone who has got in touch to offer their support. It means a lot."

Fish factory labourer Donnie Fraser was arrested last week after a probe was launched into the incident earlier this month.

Fraser, 19, of Peterhead, appeared at the town's sheriff court on Wednesday and admitted shouting a racially offensive remark likely to incite public disorder.

The court heard he yelled: "F*** you, you black c***, at Mr Tapping during the match.

Sheriff Alison Stirling told Fraser he had committed a "terrible offence".

Fraser was ordered to pay £300 compensation to Tapping and was banned from football matches for a year.

Defence lawyer Garry Sturrock said his client was ashamed. He told the court: "He tells me that racial remarks are completely out of character for him. He is deeply ashamed and accepts the wrongness of his actions."

Police Scotland have appealed for any supporters who saw or heard the racist abuse aimed at Tapping to get in touch.

Contextual targeting label: 
Football

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

218192