Manchester United star Paul Pogba has hit back after receiving waves of sickening racist abuse on Twitter, affirming that such vitriol only made him a stronger person. The midfielder found himself the subject of abuse on Monday after missing a penalty in United’s 1-1 draw with Wolves. Twitter responded by promising to meet with club representatives and crack down on hateful messages on the social media platform, while Pogba also attracted support from across the world of football following the abuse. Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream “We have always maintained an open and healthy dialogue with our partners in this space, but we know we need to do more to protect our users. Racist behaviour has no place on our platform and we strongly condemn it” a spokesman for the company told Sky Sports News.”To this end, we look forward to working more closely with our partners to develop shared solutions together. In the meantime, for Twitter’s part, we will continue to proactively monitor the conversation, and take aggressive enforcement action when content violates our rules.”But the situation was repeated on Saturday, this time with Marcus Rashford in the eye of the storm after erring from the spot as United went down 2-1 to Crystal Palace. Pogba has now come out to confront his abusers, slamming their “ignorance” and promising that they would not get the better of him. “My ancestors and my parents suffered for my generation to be free today, to work, to take the bus, to play football,” he wrote on Twitter. “Racist insults are ignorance and can only make me stronger and motivate me to fight for the next generation.”My ancestors and my parents suffered for my generation to be free today, to work, to take the bus, to play football. Racist insults are ignorance and can only make me stronger and motivate me to fight for the next generation. pic.twitter.com/J9IqyWQj4K— Paul Pogba (@paulpogba) August 25, 2019United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also addressed the issue on Saturday after seeing Rashford targeted by racial slurs.“We need to stop it, it needs to stop,” the 46-year-old said after the Palace clash.“I’m just lost for words if it keeps going. We keep having all these campaigns and they keep hiding behind fake identities. It’s crazy that we talk about this in 2019.”Rashford had also defended Pogba after he came in for vile slurs after Monday’s game .“Manchester United is a family. Paul Pogba is a huge part of that family, when you attack him, you attack us all,” the England striker said on Twitter. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
Roma defender Chris Smalling says racism is “unacceptable” and “should not be stood for”, in his first press conference since joining the Italian club from Manchester United. The English centre-half joined the Serie A side on transfer deadline day, crossing over on loan for a season from the Red Devils after it became apparent he was no longer a first-choice selection at Old Trafford. Smalling was still at the Theatre of Dreams when Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford were racially abused, and after making the move to Italy – the scene of racism directed at former team-mate Romelu Lukaku – he called for change with a problem he believes is a worldwide issue. Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream “I think racism is unacceptable and should not be stood for. It is not an issue just in Italy, it is around the world,” Smalling said. “There needs to be a change, there will be generational changes and younger people will have a different perspective. “But it does happen, not just in Italy but around the world, and it is very sad and unacceptable that it still happens in these modern times.” Smalling is yet to make his debut for the Giallorossi after being an unused substitute in the 1-1 draw against city rivals Lazio on Sunday. The 29-year-old will be hoping to make his first appearance for Roma after the international break in September 15’s home match against Sassuolo. Having made more than 300 appearances for Manchester United in all competitions, Smalling is confident his Premier League experience will lead him to being a success in Serie A. “There is a lot of responsibility on the defence as a whole [in Italy] and the centre-backs too, but that is something I enjoy. I like to push up high, play high up the pitch, and the manager wants us to be high,” he said. “I am a defender that likes to defend on the front foot so I think this is the perfect type of football for me and hopefully it allows me to show my real qualities. “I think Serie A has always been a goal of mine to play in one day, because as a defender if you get the chance to experience Serie A you want to do it. “I think I’ve played a lot in the Premier League and now I can bring my qualities that I’ve learned to Italy, and that is something I am looking forward to.”
Antonio Rudiger is ready to return from the knee injury he suffered in April and could feature against Wolves on Saturday, head coach Frank Lampard confirmed.Germany international Rudiger needed surgery on the meniscus of his left knee after suffering the injury in a 1-1 draw with Manchester United on April 28, subsequently ruling him out of the final month of the 2018-19 season.Although Chelsea managed to secure a third-place finish in the Premier League and won the Europa League without Rudiger, their start to the new campaign suggests they have missed his influence at the back. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Chelsea have conceded nine goals in just four matches, with only Norwich City shipping more, and claimed a solitary win in the process.But having featured in a couple of Chelsea Under-23s games, Rudiger is ready for first-team action.Back on the pitch for 90 min. thanks to the @ChelseaFC development squad #cleansheet #homevictory #comebackwork #Hustle #AlwaysBelieve pic.twitter.com/UsjdfkrvLp — Antonio Rüdiger (@ToniRuediger) August 19, 2019 “Rudiger is fit to play,” Lampard told reporters at his pre-match news conference on Friday. “That’s obviously a choice for me [if he starts], but he’ll have an important role because of his personality, character and quality as an international defender.”We have missed him, as we have with a few more frontline players. It is important as a team, everyone talks about how young we are and becoming, I don’t want a young team for the sake of it.”I want leaders within that. Rudiger isn’t old but he certainly needs to take on the responsibility of being a leader.”I see it in his personality that he has. It has to be channelled in the right direction and he can then be very influential for the team and also for the likes of [Callum] Hudson-Odoi, [Mason] Mount and [Fikayo] Tomori. This happens when you become more experienced and he is ready to take on those roles.”N’Golo Kante remains sidelined, however, having suffered an ankle injury against Leicester City in Chelsea’s second league game of the season.”[Mateo] Kovacic is fit to play, N’Golo is not fit yet,” he added. “He still has issues with his ankle. The medical team are working with him.”He is in a transition period and we are trying to get him on the pitch. He is doing some physical work but this game comes too soon for him.”Hopefully he is close. I don’t want to jump the gun because we are waiting for improvements for that final step to get him where we want him to be on the pitch.”Hopefully that will be in the next week or so, and again, alongside Rudiger, Willian, Callum and Ruben [Loftus-Cheek].”They are big players who are really going to up our level because they will compete to play. Pedro is fine too, yes.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.