Nicolas Pepe was sent off in Arsenal’s match against Leeds United after referee Anthony Taylor was alerted to a possible headbutt when Leeds defender Ezgjan Alioski went down.
Following a VAR review it was clear that Pepe had indeed headbutted Alioski, giving Taylor no choice but to show Pepe a straight red card in a match that was scoreless.
The Ivorian international has since suffered racist abuse on social media and was subjected to vile abuse from trolls online.
Former England and Chelsea winger Shaun Wright-Phillips posted a screenshot of some of the abuse targeted at Pepe on Twitter and said: “And Twitter say they are protecting people from racial abuse! When is it enough and when will it stop?!?”.
— Shaun W-Phillips (@swp29) November 22, 2020
The abuse directed at Pepe comes three weeks after Tottenham winger Ryan Sessegnon was the target of similar online racial slurs. Sessegnon, who is currently on loan at German club Hoffenheim, posted a screenshot of messages he received on Instagram.
Other black players, including Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha, Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham, Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford and Mancehster City’s Raheem Sterling, have been targeted in the past.