Fans of English football team Leeds United have been accused of racism after showing off a confusing chant that referred to a rival fan as “Chinese.”
The moment, which was caught on video, occurred after Manchester United beat Leeds United (4-0) in a “friendly” match at Optus Stadium in Perth, Western Australia on Wednesday.
— StretfordPaddock (@StretfordPaddck) July 17, 2019
In the video, two middle-aged Leeds fans are seen interrupting the interview of a young Manchester fan by chanting, “We’re all from Leeds, you’re all Chinese.”
The Manchester fan, who is not even Asian, is left bemused.
A Manchester fan account called Stretford Paddock posted the chant video on Twitter, writing, “Disgusting to see that Leeds fans use casual racism like this. It’s not on. #KickItOut #NoRoomForRacism.”
The post has received more than 180,000 views, leaving users confused or convinced that it was racist.
What are they even saying here? What’s their point?! We’re from Leeds and no one outside of the UK knows who we are?!
— Simon Anders (@SimonAnders92) July 17, 2019
Sickening racism, not sure I’ll get over this until I’ve written a strongly worded complaint.
— LUFCMischief (@LufcMischief) July 17, 2019
So what they’re saying is no-one outside of Leeds supports them? This just makes them look stupid more than anything else
— Will Joy (@willjoy13) July 17, 2019
It is racist to pick on a kid because you think he looks Chinese but more ironic to say we’re from Leeds implying our support is local……it isn’t we rely on a global fan base. If you think this is acceptable behaviour you have a problem
— Mary Mary Mary (@Mazzaleeds) July 17, 2019
Love that they are singing that to a white kid…
— Andrew Southwick (@RedBeardedRed) July 17, 2019
As some have pointed out, the chant only appears to highlight how Manchester has fans all over the world. And apparently, it also suggests how Leeds must have none.
Manchester United is one of 20 clubs in the Premier League, the top level of the English football league system. The team claims to have over 107 million followers in mainland China.
“China is a hugely important part of the world for Manchester United,” says Manchester United’s group managing director Richard Arnold in an exclusive interview with Xinhua @ManUtd pic.twitter.com/Fy0BMyqHzO
— Xinhua Sports (@XHSports) July 18, 2019
“China is a hugely important part of the world for Manchester United,” managing director Richard Arnold told Xinhua Sports. “Over a hundred million of our family of fans live here.”
On the other hand, Leeds United is one of 24 teams in the English Football League (EFL) Championship, regarded as the second-highest level after the Premier League. It’s unclear how many Chinese fans the team has.
Featured Images via Twitter / @StretfordPaddck