Floriana FC slapped with €3,000 fine over racist abuse

Floriana FC supporters racially abused St Lucia goalkeeper Julani Archibald in their opening match of the season

Floriana FC supporters
Floriana FC supporters

Floriana FC have been handed a €3,000 fine after being found guilty of discriminatory behaviour by their fans by the Malta FA’s Control, Disciplinary and Ethics Committee.

The deduction of three points was suspended, Malta FA’s Control, Disciplinary and Ethics Committee 2021/22.

In their opening match of the season against St Lucia, Floriana fans racially abused opposition goalkeeper Julani Archibald.

Archibald, who was debuting with his team, was subjected to racial abuse from the stands. In a Facebook post, Archibald thanked his teammates and coaching staff for standing up for him.

"It is sad in today’s world that fans are still being racist... I’m proud of being black but there’s no room for racism in our game," Archibald said.

In a statement, the MFA said the perpetrator in this case had been identified, with police charges issued against him. The person will appear in court in the coming days. 

“The Malta FA strongly condemns any discriminatory or racist behaviour and will continue to lead the fight against racism and discrimination in the game of football,” the statement read.

The Malta FA has recently introduced the 3-step procedure where discriminatory behaviour is observed during any of its matches. In such cases, Match officials will stop the match, and subsequently suspend it for a few minutes. As a last resort, if such behaviour persists, the match in question may also be abandoned altogether.

In a statement, the Floriana club pointed out its “strong stand against any form of racism”.

It did however say that it would be appealing the decision taken by the MFA committee.

“Floriana Football Club has already initiated the process to submit an appeal to the decision within the structures of the Malta Football Association and is also reserving its right to defend its position in front of relevant international bodies,” it said.

The club called on supporters to keep backing the team with “integrity, respect and good behaviour”.