It is clear to anyone who has been to a Chelsea match this season how much Frank Lampard and the players appreciate the support they are receiving from our fans at the start of this fresh era for the football club. Equally, we are sure our supporters have been enjoying the matches and the way the football is being played.
The vibe is good, and our fans can contribute to maintaining such a positive start to 2019/20, and a healthy atmosphere at the Bridge and away grounds, by ensuring discriminatory language and chants have no part to play in being a Chelsea supporter.
Facing West Ham United this weekend brings this into sharp focus due to a song that has been sung relating to our opponents and containing the word ‘Pikeys’.
Make no mistake, this term, which has for too long been used to marginalise and discriminate against the traveller community, is offensive and is considered so by the authorities as well as by your football club.
We have made it clear this season on more than one occasion that although the song may be intended as one supportive of Frank and celebratory of his achievements, it is not the type of support we want to hear. At Chelsea we are all very appreciative of the backing Frank has had over the years but not if it contains offensive or discriminatory language.
Times change and as a club and as fans we have to change with them. As the game becomes more diverse and more inclusive, it is important that everyone is aware that words that could once be dismissed as harmless banter can have a negative effect on individuals and communities - even if no harm is intended. Football is for everyone and everyone needs to feel included.
Therefore, as we look forward to a proper London derby atmosphere in what is traditionally a game of great passion and rivalry, we ask for the support of Frank and the team to remain respectful and positive at all times inside and around the stadium, as well as on transport to and from the match.
Chelsea is proud of our diversity and our vision embraces equality regardless of race, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, disability or religion.
If you hear or see discrimination of any kind taking place, please report it.
During the match, you can TEXT 07894 937 793
After the match, you can CALL 020 7386 3355
You can also download the Kick It Out app
If we receive evidence that supporters have engaged in any form of discriminatory chanting or behaviour, we will take the strongest possible action, including supporting criminal prosecution.