Outrage after picture of Muslims praying at Liverpool football ground labelled a 'disgrace'

Liverpool FC assures against against supporter, says discrimination will not be tolerated at the club

Web Desk April 16, 2015

Liverpool FC has assured to take action against a supporter who posted a picture of two Muslim men praying at a Premier League stadium, which he termed a "disgrace".

The picture, tweeted by Stephen Dodd, shows Asif Bodi and Abubakar Bhula praying in a stairwell of Liverpool’s Anfield ground. It was tweeted with the caption: "Muslims praying at half-time at the match yesterday #DISGRACE."

Read: Football: Racism is a devil, says FIFA chief

In a statement, Liverpool said discrimination would not be tolerated at the club and it would "take appropriate action against the individual involved".

Dodd's post, which was shared on social media after Liverpool took on Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup last month, was met with widespread condemnation with users referring to him as a 'bigot' and a 'disgrace to humanity'.

The tweet was also reported to the police, who investigated but decided that no criminal offence had taken place. They referred the matter back to the club.

It is not known if Dodd is a season ticket holder, but he could have this membership revoked or be banned from future matches.

Read: Racism and football

A solicitor by profession, Bodi said it was not the first time he had prayed at a match.

"It only takes a few minutes and this time it was during half-time that we needed to pray," the lawyer said.

"We have a small window in which to pray. That day, the time came for prayer and the window would have closed before the game finished so we did it at half-time," he added.


He further explained that "most people are absolutely fine with it and the stewards at Anfield are wonderful, but it only takes one or two people to react in the wrong way and you could have a nasty situation."

Bodi, whose eight-year-old son Ayman is also pictured beside him, said, "My little boy said at the time 'someone is taking a picture of us' and I thought maybe it was someone who hadn’t seen prayers before. I certainly didn’t expect to be called a disgrace for doing it."

Bodi revealed that the man was not abusive to them, and was thankful for all the support they received.

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"I’ve supported Liverpool for 40 years and I used to be a season ticket holder. From what I understand, this guy doesn’t live too far from the ground and is probably a boyhood fan, so I wouldn’t want him excluded from the ground or anything," Bodi said.

He also said that the man "should be given a talking to and made to go on an awareness course or educating."

In 2013, a group of West Ham supporters were abused by onlooking fans because they were praying behind the main stand at Upton Park during a match.

This article originally appeared on Mail Online


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M Siddique | 6 years ago | Reply @Kumar: Good point. And if this gentleman was in India he would be allowed to orchastrate the slaughter hundreds of muslim civilians. He would have been condemned to serving 5 years as Prime Minister of India. Oh wait, I was thinking of Modi, not Bodi. Sorry. My bad bro.
Puppet | 6 years ago | Reply @Kumar: Not everybody is the same Kumar. You have gotten wrong impression of Muslims. You need to open up your horizon and stop painting all Muslims with the same brush.
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