John Yems told Muslim players 'your people blow up stuff with vests'
REVEALED: John Yems told Muslim players ‘your people blow up stuff with vests’, ‘carry bombs’ in their bags and used Arnold Schwarzenegger’s name to emphasise the N-word – as FA report exposes full extent of shocking ‘racist banter’ while at Crawley
- John Yems’ ‘discriminatory language’ and ‘racist banter’ has been revealed
- The 63-year-old was given an 18-month ban following Sportsmail’s revelations
- The FA conclude that the former Crawley manager is not a ‘conscious racist’
- But they agreed his ‘banter’ came across as offensive, racist and Islamophobic
The full extent of former Crawley manager John Yems’ ‘discriminatory language’ and ‘racist banter’ towards his players has been revealed by the FA.
The 63-year-old was given an 18-month ban earlier this month following Sportsmail’s revelations that a group of Crawley players had complained about their manager’s language last April, with the League Two club dismissing him the following month and the FA finding him guilty of 12 charges of misconduct.
In their written reasons for the verdict published on Tuesday the FA conclude that Yems is not a ‘conscious racist,’ but the allegations made against him which were upheld by their independent panel remain shocking.
The full extent of former Crawley manager John Yems’ ‘discriminatory language’ and ‘racist banter’ towards his players has been revealed by the FA
He was given an 18-month ban earlier this month following Sportsmail’s revelations that a group of Crawley players had complained about their manager’s language last April
Sportsmail revealed last April that Yems had been accused of calling Crawley’s black players ‘Zulu warriors’ and describing Muslim members of the squad as ‘terrorists,’ both of which were found to have occurred.
Amongst other extraordinary findings the FA panel concluded that Yems also:
- Deliberately mispronounced the second half of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s name to emphasise the word, ‘n****r’
- Told Muslim players ‘your people blow up stuff with vests’.
- Said that an Iraqi youth international at the club ‘would probably blow up the stadium.’
- Made repeated comments about another player ‘carrying a bomb in his bag.’
- Called one player a ‘curry muncher.’
- Repeatedly ask the same player if he was unhappy that the club did not serve ‘curry pizza.’
- Made a remark to one player about ‘how dark his skin is’ on his return to Crawley after representing Grenada.
- Frequently asked several African players whether they ate jerk chicken despite being told on more than one occasion that it is a Jamaican delicacy.
The FA dismissed four other allegations against Yems, including other supposed jokes about terrorism and a claim that he said black people do not go fishing because they would stab the fish.
Whilst making clear that they do not regard Yems as a racist the FA panel concluded that his behaviour came across as ‘offensive, racist and Islamophobic’ to many of Crawley’s players, which led them to give him the longest ban that has ever been imposed for discriminatory language.
‘We regard this as an extremely serious case,’ the FA report says. ‘We have accepted that Mr Yems is not a conscious racist. If he were, an extremely lengthy, even permanent, suspension would be appropriate.
The FA conclude that Yems is not a ‘conscious racist,’ but the allegations made against him which were upheld by their independent panel remain shocking
‘Nevertheless, Mr Yems’ ‘banter’ undoubtedly came across to the victims and others as offensive, racist and Islamophobic. Mr Yems simply paid no regard to the distress which his misplaced jocularity was causing.’
The FA describe the players who gave evidence against Yems as credible witness, and condemn him for not considering how his language made them feel.
‘We are confident that Mr Yems as a person is not a racist,’ the report says. ‘Nor did Mr Yems ever intend to make racist remarks.
‘Nevertheless, it is how what he said from time to time would be perceived by those to whom it was addressed which is what matters rather than his subjective intent.
‘There was a considerable weight of evidence to the effect that Mr Yems was in the habit of, in his perception, cracking jokes which were perceived as racist by those who were the butt of the jokes.
‘Probably, Mr Yems gave no thought at all to the effect of his language on those at whom the ‘jokes’ were aimed. Nor did he give any thought at all to the likely reaction of others to the language he used.
However, they did say that his ‘banter undoubtedly came across to the victims and others as offensive, racist and Islamophobic’
‘In our view, Mr Yems was not deliberately lying in his evidence about not having said many of the things alleged. Indeed, he may well think that he did not in fact say what is alleged.
‘In our view, he simply gave no thought at all to the effect of what he was saying from time to time. For him, there was nothing unusual or out of the ordinary in his language so as to make it memorable.
‘Nevertheless, for those who were the butt of the comments the position was entirely different. We have already noted our finding that the players who gave evidence before us were impressive witnesses. We have no doubt that they were intending to tell us the truth, and we reject categorically the suggestion that any of them was lying.’
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