Referees can stop games over fan abuse at Confederations Cup, say FIFA

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Referees can stop games over fan abuse at Confederations Cup, say Fifa

Referees will be given the power to stop and abandon games if they witness any discrimination from fans in this year’s Confederations Cup.

The measure is part of Fifa’s “three-step procedure”, which gives officials the power to stop, suspend and then call off fixtures over fan behaviour.

World football’s governing body will deploy anti-discrimination observers.

“These are ground-breaking changes in the fight against discrimination,” said Fifa president Gianni Infantino.

“Both initiatives are extra tools for the referees and match officials to prevent discriminatory attitudes and ensure that the atmosphere in the stadium is one of fair play and respect.”

The 2017 Confederations Cup is the 10th edition of the international tournament, which is contested by the holders of each of the six regional championships, along with the World Cup holder and the host nation.

As hosts of the 2018 World Cup, Russia will also host the 2017 event.

Fifa’s game observers are a continuation of the monitoring system it put in place for 2018 World Cup qualifiers and selected friendlies.

They will be coordinated and trained by the Football Against Racism in Europe (Fare) network and any evidence they collect will be forwarded to Fifa’s disciplinary committee for review and potential action.

Fifa has previously called the level of racism in the Russian game “completely unacceptable”.