Rhian Brewster racism case closed by UEFA; no charges for Spartak Moscow
Liverpool have urged football's governing bodies to take "robust" action to tackle discrimination in the game after a racism allegation made by young striker Rhian Brewster was dropped due to insufficient evidence.
UEFA's investigation into allegations by Brewster of racist abuse by a Spartak Moscow player failed to find any evidence to corroborate the claim.
European football's control, ethics and disciplinary body acknowledged that the allegation was made in good faith by the 17-year-old but, after a number of extensive interviews with players and match officials, it came down to Brewster's word against that of Spartak captain Leonid Mironov.
Defender Mironov admitted swearing at Brewster during Spartak's 2-0 defeat in the UEFA Youth League match at Prenton Park in December but denied using racist language.
Five players from each side -- plus the two match officials along with Mironov -- were questioned about the incident but none could confirm hearing any discriminatory language.
"Liverpool Football Club acknowledges UEFA's findings and accepts that their decision, announced today, concludes the matter as pertains to this specific case," a club spokesman said.
"We would like to place on record our admiration for the courage shown by Rhian Brewster throughout this process and commend his exemplary conduct.
"The club is very proud of the maturity, dignity and leadership Rhian has displayed in bringing focus to this issue and he will continue to receive our full support.
"In keeping with Rhian's stance, the club encourages football's governing bodies to facilitate the most robust processes possible to identify and tackle discrimination in the game at all ages."
UEFA said in a statement that it "appointed an ethics and disciplinary inspector to conduct a thorough independent investigation" following Brewster's claim.
"Leonid Mironov was also interviewed by the inspector and stated that he indeed swore at Rhian Brewster, but he unreservedly denied using any discriminatory language," the statement said.
"After concluding his investigation, the inspector found no evidence to corroborate the allegations, which he believed were made in complete good faith by the Liverpool player Rhian Brewster."