Three fans were ejected from the Amex Stadium for “unacceptable abuse” during Brighton’s home draw against Chelsea on New Year’s Day, the south-coast club have announced.
Brighton have confirmed two home fans and a Chelsea supporter were removed from the stadium and later arrested following three unrelated incidents.
“Two home supporters and one visiting supporter were ejected from the Amex and subsequently arrested, for three separate incidents of unacceptable abuse during yesterday’s match against Chelsea,” Brighton said.
“Yet again it is with regret that we report the ejection of two home supporters – one for racist abuse of Chelsea players and one for homophobic abuse aimed at Chelsea supporters.”
Brighton said one Chelsea fan was also removed by club stewards for homophobic abuse aimed at home supporters.
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“All three were arrested by Sussex Police outside the stadium and now face prosecution,” Brighton said.
The club’s chief executive and deputy chairman Paul Barber added: “Yet again our safety and stewarding team, along with Sussex Police, have had to deal with three separate and unwanted instances of disgusting racist and homophobic abuse.
“If the prospect of a life ban from watching their clubs play football isn’t a strong enough deterrent, we have to ask the question as to whether the courts should be given the power to hand out more severe punishments? Football can only do so much, and we are sick and tired of the game’s reputation being tarnished by these people.”