Tottenham Hotspur have issued a statement on social media and their website after a caller made an anti-semitic remark directed at Spurs chairman Daniel Levy on a TalkSport radio call-in program Tuesday.
The comment, which was in regards to Manchester City potentially making a large bid for Harry Kane to effect a transfer this summer, was made by a man who called in to a program hosted by Perry Groves and Jordan Jarrett Bryan and was intended to imply that Levy is stingy with money due to his Jewish status. While Groves and Bryan (or rather their production team) did end the call immediately, the anti-semitic comment was not discussed or called out and the hosts quickly moved on to another topic.
TalkSport later apologized for the incident.
There is video of the incident posted on YouTube, for those who are curious on what exactly was said, though I will not be embedding it in this article. In addition to the statement, Spurs lodged a formal protest with TalkSport over the failure to address the incident on-air.
Here is the full text of Tottenham’s response:
The Club notes TalkSport’s apology following an antisemitic incident on their The Sports Bar programme on Tuesday 3 August.
We were appalled that neither presenter addressed the comment, failing to call out the antisemitic trope. We are under no doubt that if an equivalent comment had been made regarding an individual’s race or other protected characteristic, the response would have been immediate and far-reaching.
It cannot be acceptable that antisemitism does not receive the same level of condemnation as other forms of discrimination and efforts to tackle it should be no less rigorous.
It’s never fun to write these kinds of stories, but times being what they are, we should almost expect things like this. Anti-semitism has been on the rise worldwide, not just in the UK, and while the Premier League, players and clubs have all worked hard this past year to address incidents of racial abuse, it does feel at times that anti-semitism is addressed with less frequency. It certainly doesn’t make it right.
Unfortunately, anti-semitic tropes directed at not only Levy but also Tottenham supporters are a persistent problem and have been for decades. Spurs are a club that historically been closely tied to the Jewish community in London, though the club has started the process of distancing itself somewhat from this connection. This is a strong statement from Tottenham and it should be supported by all Spurs fans.