Former English football captain Sol Campbell has criticized Uefa's decision to choose Poland and Ukraine to host the Euro 2012 tournament this summer, advising fans to stay away due to the danger of racism and violence.
The Independent reports that Campbell is supported by the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) in his concerns that supporters will be in danger of racism and violence. Speaking to Panorama Campbell urged fans to "stay home, watch it on TV... don't even risk it... because you could end up coming back in a coffin" the Telegraph reported.
According to the BBC the British government has advised fans of Afro-Caribbean or Asian descent to take extra care in the Ukraine due to the risk of racially motivated attacks. Concerns are running high that fans will be targeted by anti-Semites, fascists and racist thugs as evidenced by footage filmed by the BBC in the two host countries.
The Union of European Football Associations (Uefa) defended its decision to host the tournament in the Eastern European countries. It released a statement saying "Uefa Euro 2012 brings the spotlight on the host countries and clearly creates an opportunity to address and confront such societal issues.
Uefa's zero-tolerance approach to racism is still valid both on and off the pitch and ultimately the referee has the power to stop or abandon a match should racist incidents occur."