Investigation launched after Peterborough deaf footballer ‘abused by opposition player’

An investigation has been launched after a deaf footballer from Peterborough alleged he was abused by an opposition player.

Wednesday, 18th September 2019, 11:32 am
Will Palmer

Will Palmer (17) from Hampton was playing for Stamford in an FA Youth Cup match against Lincoln United when he claims offensive language referring to his deafness was used against him.

He is also alleging that the same player later mocked him during the match.

Lincoln have now suspended their player while an investigation is carried out and said they are working with the FA and Stamford officials.

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A statement on the club’s Facebook page, which was posted on Tuesday, reads: “Lincoln United confirm we are aware of alleged abuse of a deaf player in last night’s FA Youth Cup match at Stamford AFC.

“We are currently conducting internal investigations into the incident and will respond in due course. Lincoln United FC abhor all forms of abuse and will look to take action against anyone tarnishing our wonderful community club.”

Will, who also plays for Peterborough United’s deaf football team, has a cochlear implant in his right ear which gives him access to sounds and speech.

Speaking about the alleged incident, he said: “I just felt broken really. I just wanted to be away from everyone – it really knocked my confidence down a lot.

“I wanted to be off that pitch right away and nearly asked the manager to sub me off.

“I really wanted to come off but I felt like if I did that it would make me look weak so I decided to stay on and try and face it off, but it didn’t help.”

The match was won 6-0 by Stamford.

The club said in a statement yesterday: “Following the youth team’s victory last night in the FA Youth Cup, we have been made aware of an allegation of abuse against one of our players.

“Our player, who is deaf, suffered the alleged abuse from an opposition player.

“We are in consultation with the player and his family and we are aware the opposition are investigating and we thank them for dealing with this matter promptly.

“No further comment will be made publicly and we await confirmation from the relevant parties and we hope this matter can be resolved in the best interests of the player concerned and football in general.”

The FA has been contacted for comment.