Bayern Munich talent Mathys Tel earned the first start of the season in the Bavarians’ 0-3 DFL-Supercup defeat to RB Leipzig. The 18-year-old with a future of glittering promise has the support of his bosses, the team, and many Bayern fans — but as is so common, received racist abuse in the aftermath of the game.
Tel’s agent released a statement and a call to action afterwards. As transcribed by @iMiaSanMia:
I condemn racist attacks in the strongest possible terms - against the black community in general and against the person of Mathys Tel in particular.
These shocking words are just a reflection of the hatred and ignorance of knowing how to live together. We must condemn this with the utmost determination. We will ensure that the integrity and honor of Mathys are respected. This plague must be fought with all might
Bayern released a statement as well through its social media accounts. Via @FCBayernUS:
We strongly condemn the inhuman comments that Mathys Tel was exposed to on social media. Anyone who writes such disgustingly racist things is not a fan of FC Bayern. Mathys, we have your back and you have our full support! #RotGegenRassismus
(The hashtag translates to Red [card] Against Racism, a slogan for the team’s anti-racism campaign — and which they wore on their sleeve at the Supercup).
Finally, Tel himself took to Instagram to respond to the situation:
Any time this happens, there will always be a segment of reactionary responses. ‘Oh, there are white players who get abuse, too.’ Or, ‘those aren’t real fans.’ And yes, online trolls — fans of the team or not — can target anybody from behind a keyboard.
Nevertheless, it’s important to understand the character of the reactions routinely faced by black players — and racism more broadly, as experienced by segments of society outside of professional sport too. It will always be incumbent on us all to call it out, condemn, and refuse to stand by it whenever we see it.
This wasn’t the first and it won’t be the last time a black player at Bayern is the subject of racist abuse. The work to stamp it out will be ongoing. Let’s all take part in it.
Misery. Pain. Depression. Interested in a more in-depth analysis of the game (laced with a healthy dose of the #TuchelOut agenda)? Then check out our newest podcast episode! Listen to it below or on Spotify.
As always, we appreciate all the support!