SHOCKED chairman Rory Fitzgerald says Wealdstone will fully support winger Ryan Gondoh – and his teammates – in light of a racial abuse storm over the past week.
The 23-year-old was racially abused by a homeless woman outside Queensway tube station. While not condoning his own actions, he reacted by kicking away her cup and squirting water at her.
When the incident went viral, he began to receive ‘disturbing and disgusting’ abuse, including death threats.
Wealdstone put out a statement saying that ‘there was no place in society for racism, discrimination or any form of violence’ and said they would discuss the matter with him.
However, Gondoh’s team-mates and Stones staff have since been bombarded with abusive messages.
In a statement on Twitter on Thursday, the club said: “Since we posted about an incident involving Ryan Gondoh on Tuesday, stating the club will be making no further comment on the matter, members of staff at the club and seven of our first team players have been the recipients of a large number of vile, racist messages.
“We have a zero-tolerance policy toward racism and as a club will not stand for any form of abuse directed at our members of staff. We are sickened by these messages and have forwarded them onto the police to investigate.”
Fitzgerald has also expressed his dismay at the disgraceful events in a week in which Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford was the victim of racial slurs after the Red Devils’ defeat to Villarreal in the Europa League final.
He told The NLP: “I have been shocked by the amount of abuse Ryan, his team-mates, staff and the club have got. We have had hundreds of abusive emails, messages and phone calls – it’s outrageous.
“We are fully supporting Ryan and everyone else at the club who has been abused. It’s been tough and it doesn’t seem to go away – it’s relentless.
“We tried to focus on the last game of the season and not give these people too much coverage. Some of the stuff being sent to us is ridiculous. We are just hoping we can get through this weekend and Ryan isn’t too affected by it all.”
National League general manager Mark Ives added the league’s support to the Stones.
He said: “The league are appalled by the reported racist abuse. As an organisation we are fully supportive of the club in addressing this. We condemn discrimination in any form.”