FIFA president Sepp Blatter has rejected the notion of deducting points from clubs who have vocally racist fans at matches as a way of tackling discrimination in football.
The 77-year-old has suggested such sanctions in the past, but, after considering what effects this decision might have, he has now backed down from the suggested solution. Speaking at a conference in Zurich, the Blatter said such action could provoke further crowd disturbances.
"Can we stop it by deducting points or by relegating a team? Or will this lead to persons coming to the stadium wanting to stop the game intentionally? There is so much passion in football," Blatter told reporters. "We have to do something but the danger is if we say the match will be replayed, or there will be a deduction of points or whatever, this can open the door for groups of hooligans to create these problems."
In order to combat prejudice in the game, Blatter believes all leagues and clubs must make a commitment to a unified stance against racism.
"They say it must be done all around the world, it must be in all disciplinary committees and associations and leagues and it must be the same standard," Blatter said.