Chelsea fan denies racist intent on Paris Metro

Richard Barklie, 50, has denied any racist intent after admitting to pushing a black man away from a carriage on the Paris Metro

A Chelsea supporter has admitted to pushing a black man off a Paris Metro train but claims the commuter started the altercation.

Richard Barklie, 50, was caught on film shoving Souleymane Sylla away from the carriage on two occasions before Chelsea’s 1-1 draw with Paris Saint-Germain on February 17.

“Mr Sylla was the only person using aggression,” Barklie, a former police officer, told Stratford Magistrates’ Court.

“He was aggressively forcing himself into this space where there was no room.”

Barklie added that Sylla began shouting with “spray coming out of his mouth” after being pushed away from the train a second time.

Asked by his lawyer, Nick Scott, if he had an issue with the “colour of Sylla’s skin”, Barklie replied: “None whatsoever.”

Barklie, who denies any wrongdoing, also said he did not join in with the chant of “We’re racist and that’s the way we like it”, which can be heard on the video footage.

As well as Barklie, Jordan Munday, 20, of Sidcup, south-east London, William Simpson, 26, of Ashford, Surrey, and Joshua Parsons, 20, of Dorking, Surrey are challenging the ban.

Munday also denied joining in with the racist chanting. When shown the footage of his mouth moving, Munday said: “I was breathing, I have to breathe.”

Dean Callis, 32, of Liverpool Road in Islington, north London, has accepted a five-year banning order for his role in the incident.

The case continues.

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