Ferdinands: We want to help

Anton Ferdinand, left, and Rio Ferdinand said they want to work with the Kick it Out campaign

Anton Ferdinand, left, and Rio Ferdinand said they want to work with the Kick it Out campaign

First published in National Sport News © by

The Ferdinand brothers want to work with Kick it Out to make it more relevant.

Twelve months after they were catapulted into the centre of a racism row, the Ferdinands have attempted to draw a line under the wrangling.

"On the issue of Kick it Out, we would like to go on record to say what fantastic work they have done in the past regarding education and awareness," said the statement issued by their management team, New Era Global Sports. "However, times change and organisations need to change with them. We are more than happy to join the discussion, privately, to Make Kick it out more relevant in its fight to stamp out racism in football."

Kick it Out welcomed the statement, as did Professional Footballers' Association chief executive Gordon Taylor, whose organisation is threatened by a breakaway movement for black players which the Ferdinand brothers were suggested to be a part of.

It does not seem that is likely, however it is clear they believe there are serious issues to address.

"It has been a year since the incident at Loftus Road," read the statement from the Ferdinands.

"During that time, some of the deep divisions that exist in football have been exposed.

"Although we have been left disappointed by the PFA and the FA's actions over the last year, as a family, we are committed to working with football's existing organisations towards the betterment of the game and to achieve immediate action.

"In the coming months there will be ongoing discussions, we are sure, on finding a way forward. We intend to participate in these discussions, along with numerous other current and ex professionals of all races, from the grass roots upwards, across the football community as a whole.

"We would like to thank all the fans and the staff at Queen's Park Rangers and Manchester United for their support in what has been a difficult year. In particular we want to thank Sir Alex Ferguson and Mark Hughes."

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