With a 48% rise in online abuse against footballers in the run up to Euro 2020, as lockdown hit and fans kept out of stadiums, just half a season’s worth of games were subject to more harassment than ever.
For almost a year, ex-England player and football pundit Jermaine Jenas has monitored the abuse directed (almost entirely) at black footballers. Have social media platforms kept the promises they made after the violent threats made against Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka, and Jadon Sancho following the Euros final.
With first-hand experience of being the victim of a racist mob, Jermaine interviews the games powerbokers, the Premier League and PFA. He joins the UK’s only dedicated football policing unit, following detectives as they attempt to track down trolls. In a risky move, he confronts one face-to-face in a bid to understand their motivations.
This 360-degree immersion sees Jermaine ask the question – what is needed to finally boot racism out of football, and restore the good-hearted fun of the game?
Hunting the Football Trolls – Thursday at 10pm on Channel 4