A referee has said he will no longer support Sunday League football matches after claiming he was threatened, spat and racially abused after dropping a game.
The referee, who officiated a match in Yorkshire, has been attending amateur matches for nine years.
The match, which took place last Sunday, was abandoned when a FC Panda player, sent off for dissent, refused to leave the pitch.
The official, who wants to be known only by his first name, Dwayne, said Sky Sports News: âHe took off his jersey and tried to come towards me. His teammates had to hold him back.
âI asked the manager just to send him to the locker room, I asked about 10 times. I wasn’t going anywhere, so I decided to give up the game.
“So I exploded full time and from there it got worse. I had players in my face screaming at me.
“If the other team weren’t there I actually think you would have seen a music video of me getting hit. It went from zero to 100 in under two minutes, it was just right. absolutely mental.
âComing back to the locker room, I had a racist comment about me. I heard it and it makes your blood boil, but I just felt weak because it was one of those where I just had to go through and ignore it because if I turned around and faced it it would have been a lot worse.
âThe thing that pissed me off the most was that while I was changing I just noticed spit marks on the back of my shirt which hurt me a lot. human spits on people, especially these days with Covid19? “
Responding to the allegations, the FC Panda president said he was “appalled” by the accusations and that anyone found guilty of such behavior would no longer play for the club.
“I was not personally at the game but I am dismayed to hear these accusations,” the statement said.
“If any of these allegations are proven, individuals will no longer play for our club.
“I know a number of our players were disappointed with the retirement and felt it was unfair, but we will be looking carefully at events as this is the first time I have heard of these allegations from the part of the referee.
âWe will always support all of the umpires at all times and the hard work they do every week.
âWe are one of the most diverse football clubs in the Halifax area with players of South Asian, Afro-Caribbean, black and white descent.
“If Dwayne has felt threatened in a game we have played, we would like to sit down with him and apologize face to face and move forward in a positive way together.”
The West Riding County Football Association said they were “aware” of the situation, contacted the referee immediately after the incident and would be treated “accordingly”, but could not comment further while their investigation was underway.
An FA statement said: “While only 77 of the roughly 850,000 games, less than 0.01%, played each season in grassroots football include a reported incident of assault (2019-20 season), we recognize that any assault or incident of abuse is also numerous.
“The FA Arbitration Service will make direct contact to provide support to anyone who has suffered a physical offense as soon as we become aware of an incident.”