Burnley to Hand Lifetime Bans to Fans Who Flew 'White Lives Matter' Banner

Burnley believe they had identified the fans who flew a banner over the Etihad Stadium prior to the Clarets' clash with Manchester City on Monday.

The banner, reading 'White Lives Matter Burnley', drew widespread anger from across the footballing world for the offensive nature of its message, with the club issuing an immediate response condemning the apparent message those responsible intended to spread.

The culprits were not yet known to the Lancashire club, but Burnley's chief executive, Neil Hart, has since revealed they believe to have found those responsible and will hand them lifetimes bans for their actions.

"100 per cent [they will be banned], we believe we know who's responsible and we will ban those individuals for life," he told Sky Sports.

"When I saw the banner go over the Etihad from the directors' box I was disgusted, that's the word I would use. I was ashamed to see that being trailed over the Etihad like that. It's certainly not what we stand for as a football club, it's not what we stand for as a town, as a collective or community."

The banner was flown at a point in the fixture where both sets of players and staff were taking a knee in a show of solidarity towards the Black Lives Matter movement. It's a movement Hart insists Burnley are completely behind.

"We stand in solidarity with our players, with the league, with other clubs and with all our community stakeholders that we will continue to fight any form of discrimination," added Hart.

Burnley staff take a knee prior to their match with Manchester City

"Let's be very clear, Black Lives Matter is a cause players feel passionately about. It's there to highlight inequalities. Of course all lives matter, but that's common sense and this is about equality. Some individuals don't understand that or are choosing not to understand. [Monday] night is a prime example of that and it is raising racial hate.

"I've spent the last six years here heading up Burnley FC in the community and one of my top priorities, and it continues to be a top priority, is to eradicate any form of discrimination. Certainly from this football club, certainly from this stadium, and from the town. I will continue to keep that as one of my mantras because it's totally unacceptable and we will continue to fight it."

Source : 90min