Hong Kong youth side ESF Lions had a grudge to settle going into their match with rivals Kitchee Escola, having lost the previous encounter 16-0. The bad blood wasn't helped when one of the Lions earned himself a trip to the police station — and the starring role in a race scandal — by delivering a fairly unsubtle kick to the head of an opponent who had suffered a bad tackle. Reports The Telegraph:
A 10-year-old boy was released on bail after being arrested for kicking an opponent in the head during a school football match in Hong Kong, police said on Monday.
The violent incident sparked an ugly race row after a video was posted online showing the Caucasian boy kicking his 12-year-old Chinese opponent during an ill-tempered match a week ago.
Parents of the Asian boy filed a police complaint after the game between ESF Lions and Kitchee Escola descended into chaos, with fathers and the ESF coach engaged in an angry on-field altercation.
As the arrested child was representing the English Schools Foundation, a government-funded school network that teaches the kids of expatriates, accusations of racial motivation have quickly surfaced: a number of Hong Kong websites have labelled the predominantly Caucasian team as 'white bullies'. Kitchee's coach has played down the racism angle, but it has certainly sparked an ugly row in the city state formerly owned by the British Empire.