Glen Kamara says he has faced a barrage of racist abuse on social media since his clash with Slavia Plague defender Ondrej Kudela.
The Rangers midfielder said he has received the abuse “every day, easily” since the incident during last month’s Europa League match at Ibrox, in which he accused Kudela of racism.
Kudela, who denies using racist language, faces a minimum 10-game ban if found guilty by UEFA, while Kamara is also being investigated by European football’s governing body having been accused of assault in an incident following the final whistle.
Kamara told ITV News: “I haven’t paid much attention to what he [Kudela] has done after this whole incident, but I’ve seen their fans, how they’ve reacted, and I’ll get [racist] abuse probably every day on my Instagram.
“Every day, easily – I’m not the one that gets really affected by it, so I’m all right. But how the team has reacted and taken it, it’s sad, to be honest.
“I feel like I need to tell my story – the online messages I’ve been getting, the racial abuse online – Instagram, Twitter, everywhere else. I feel like as the victim, it needs to be said.”
Kudela has already been provisionally handed a one-match ban by UEFA after effectively admitting a lesser charge of insulting Kamara, which is issued “without prejudice” to any ruling the body might make on the racism allegations.
Kamara said the alleged abuse he received made him feel like a “little boy” and added he would not hesitate to walk off the pitch if it happened again.
“He came over and said, ‘you’re a monkey, you’re a f****** monkey and you know you are’,” Kamara said.
“From there I reacted and said, ‘he’s racist, he’s racist’.”
He added: “I had so many different emotions and felt like a victim – I just felt like a little boy, it was a very weird feeling.
“If I could go back to the time of the game, I’d walk off the pitch, 100 per cent. My manager [Steven Gerrard] was actually trying to get me off the pitch, but I was on my own… I couldn’t hear anybody.
“It’s an everyday life thing. I don’t know if in our lifetime we will see it change, but if I can make a change in some way, I’ll do it.”
Kudela was left out of the Slavia squad for their Europa League game at Arsenal on Thursday, with boss Jindrich Trpisovsky insisting his absence was due to illness, rather than related to the racism investigation.
“He is not here,” said Trpisovsky. “He has some health issues, he couldn’t come. He has fevers and is taking antibiotics.
“I really don’t have an answer, he is not here, he is not going to play, he was not going to play anyway.”
Kamara’s lawyer: Rangers player feels ‘victimised’
Kamara’s lawyer says Kudela’s provisional one-match ban “makes a mockery of UEFA’s claims they take racism seriously”.
Aamer Anwar told Sky Sports News his client feels “victimised” and wants stronger action to be taken against Kudela.
“Actions speak louder than words and today I think UEFA’s conduct has made a mockery on their claims that they take racism seriously,” said Mr Anwar.
“It would appear that Mr Kudela faces a one-match ban, albeit there’s still a full-scale disciplinary investigation to take place into claims of racism. But in terms of the sufficiency of evidence, the evidence that presently exists, the corroborating evidence – I think the initial suspension should have been much harsher before we get into what the final sanctions will be if he’s found guilty.
“The example is that the one-game suspension makes no difference to Mr Kudela at all because his team had already stated he would not be travelling to Arsenal because he was too ill to play. So what difference does it make that he’s had a one-game suspension?
“I’ve spoke to Glen this morning [Wednesday] – he’s got training, he’s back from international duty. He feels as though he has been victimised. It has caused strain, pressure.”
Read More: Sports News