A clip, which has since gone viral, was released showing a black man trying to board a train on the Paris metro line.
However, he was unable to get on due to a number of aggressive Chelsea fans shoving him back on to the platform. This assault being unacceptable behaviour in itself.
Then the act of denying him entry took on an evil twist as those same supporters of Chelsea began to chant:
"We're racist, we're racist and that's the way we like it."
In Italy, former Milan and national team manager Arrigo Sacchi attracted criticism with his tirade against black football players. He is quoted to have said:
"In our youth sector there are too many blacks. Watching at the Viareggio Cup makes me think there are too many coloured players. Italy has no dignity, it has no pride: you shouldn't have squads including fifteen foreigners."
As with the Chelsea incident, many have spoken out against Sacchi's bile and rightly so. In the 21st century, there can be no place for backward, outdated and offensive thinking based only on a person's race.
Such attitudes were far too common 30 and 40 years ago. From bananas being thrown on the pitch, to monkey chants and figures in football, such as former Crystal Palace chairman Ron Noades back in the early 1990s, espousing half-baked theories that black players needed a strong white player to get them through the winter months. Utter nonsense all of it and football and society as a whole, thankfully decided to turn around and say no more to racism.
When heard today, condemnation is now the norm whereas people would laugh and look the other way when confronted with racist attitudes back in the 1970s.
However, one racial group still appears to be 'fair game' for abuse, ridicule and malicious gossip - footballers of Slavic extraction.
Anti-Slav racism is not a new thing. The dictator of Nazi Germany, Adolf Hitler, had close to 30 million Slavs killed in World War II because he deemed them, along with other races, to be 'inferior'.
At the other end of the scale, and closer to home, those Slavs who fled to Britain from Eastern Europe to escape Nazi terror and stayed put to avoid returning to Stalinist occupation, faced problems finding housing and employment with some feeling obliged in resorting to 'Anglicising' their names to sound more 'British' in order to improve their chances of finding a home and work.
That generation would eventually assimilate with attitudes towards them gradually changing as the years went by. Then came the expansion of the European Union which not only incorporated Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and the Baltic states, but allowed them freedom of movement to come and work in the UK. Suddenly, the bigots having had their hatred clamped down upon by law in relation to racially abusing blacks and Asians, now had a new target.
It was around this time that more and more footballers of Slavic origin were beginning to be signed by British clubs. Hearts in particular had more than their fair share which was perhaps not surprising given they had just been taken over by a Russian-born Lithuanian, Vladimir Romanov.
The vision of Romanov was to give promising Lithuanian talent, such as Deividas Česnauskis, Marius Zaliukas and Saulius Mikoliunas, a chance to showcase their skills in the Scottish league with the hope of them impressing scouts in the richer English top flight and persuading them to part with serious cash in signing them. Also on board were a trio of promising Czech players, Roman Bednar, Michal Pospisil and Rudi Skacel.
Romanov's big plan had mixed results as the majority of those he had over from Lithuania were clearly not of the standard required in terms of playing ability. But it was the presence of those players as well as the Czech ones that peeled away a layer of Scottish society's skin and reveal an uglier side.
Rudi Skacel was probably the most talented player of Slavic origin to pull on a Hearts shirt. The Czech midfielder had had a decent career with other clubs but it was at Tynecastle where he undoubtedly played his best football. Armed with a cultured left foot that could split defences and fire in outrageous long-range goals, it was no surprise those in the stands took to him. There was also a sneaky side to him as he would often indulge in winding-up opposition players and fans with winks, cheeky grins and winning goals.
No different to Scotland's own home-grown wind-up merchants of whom pundits would chuckle at and opposing fans have a grudging respect for. However, it was Skacel's misfortune not to be home-grown in a Scottish sense as he would find out following Hearts' first defeat of the 2005/06 season to of all teams, Hibs.
The Gorgie side had gone 12 games undefeated and the schadenfreude of losing at unlucky 13 was to be expected. However, the aftermath left a sour aftertaste.
Hibs midfielder Derek Riordan fits the classic stereotype a non-football fan has of a player. Not at all bright with his brains seemingly to be placed inside his feet. He was a promising young footballer who showed that he had potential to make something of himself if he worked hard at his game.
Given his drunken, boorish antics off the pitch, if you were being kind, you would have hoped that he would fulfil his footballing talent because without the game, he would be at a loss as to what to do with himself career-wise. As time has shown, his ignorance and lack of education has proven to be his downfall with many remarking on how Riordan has wasted his talent. On the evening of that derby win in 2005, Riordan went out to celebrate his good day. However, the next morning, film footage of him singing the following chant came under the public eye:
"Rudi Skacel is a f*****g refugee, a f*****g refugee, a f*****g refugee!"
Egged on by his drinking buddies, Riordan was seen gleefully chanting this offensive ditty. Hibernian football club issued an apology to Hearts and Skacel but the player himself was mute. As was both the police and the Scottish Football Association.
Refugee to a person of Slavic origin is a hurtful reminder of the outbreak of World War II when many were forced to flee their respective homeland's thanks to an ideology that classed them as 'untermenschen', and in many cases, never to return.
If you substitute 'refugee' for 'nigger', 'paki' or 'jew', you would expect stern action to be taken against the perpetrator. Riordan got away with it. A lack of police and SFA action gave misleading legitimacy to the act with Skacel bearing the brunt of 'refugee' chants from opposing fans.
Of Riordan's insult, Skacel, in an interview with "The Scotsman" five years later said:
"I think this is something silly because probably he's never been in school. He doesn't seem to know where is Czech Republic and where is Prague. My parents are teachers. To help his education, maybe they can make some lessons for him. They're geography teachers, by the way.
"I was surprised there was such a big scandal. Other people were more upset than me; they thought it was a form of racism. But it's not correct what he did and it should not be involved in football, which is a great game. Hibs sent me a letter saying sorry, but he never said anything to me afterwards."
Another player to bear the brunt of narrow-mindedness was Skacel's team-mate at Hearts, the Lithuanian winger, Saulius Mikoliunas.
Ability-wise he was a constant source of frustration. Mikoliunas could be exceptionally brilliant for one game with a dazzling array of dribbling skills as well as chipping in with a spectacular strike or two from outside the penalty area. But with each good game, he would follow it up with two mediocre ones where at times he looked like he wished he was somewhere else.
He falls into a category that is probably the most over-populated one amongst the footballing fraternity - unfulfilled talent. He had the tools to succeed but didn't employ them as often as he should to do just that.
Scotland has many of these players. Simon Donnelly, Mark Burchill, Eoin Jess, Scott Booth all should have had more glittering playing careers than they did with many lamenting of how they could not stay at the top once they got there. There is a general feeling of regret on behalf of those players, Mikoliunas however was not given the same level of slack as they received.
Ironically, the first levels of abuse for Mikoliunas came from his own team's support. The season of 2006/07 will be remembered by Hearts fans as one where the team split. Steven Pressley, Paul Hartley and Craig Gordon made their now infamous - and ill-thought out - stand against Romanov's meddling in team affairs. A section of fans had made up their mind that Romanov was playing favourites ahead of players they felt to be better. Mikoliunas was having one of his spells where his talent was simply not shining through at all and an erroneous whisper quickly spread that he was only in the team due to be a 'favourite' of Romanov's.
Matters came to a head during a 1-0 home defeat to Rangers at Tynecastle. The abuse from a number of Hearts supporters towards Mikoliunas was vitriolic. The same supporters who a year earlier had condemned Hibs' Riordan for his abuse of Skacel, were now employing the 'refugee' taunt at Mikoliunas. "F*** off back home ya refugee" was a common shout along with the booing of Mikoliunas, who was by no means the worst Hearts player that day, every time he touched the ball.
Hearts' sporting director, Alex Koslovski, accused those who hurled the insults at Mikoliunas of "discrimination". After mock outrage from a section of Hearts supporters, Koslovski, no doubt wanting to restore the peace, retracted the claim. However, in reality, he had nothing to apologise for.
The abuse died down from the Hearts support, Mikoliunas managed to recover his form and suddenly this 'refugee' was one of the boys again. Yet opposition fans had heard the disgraceful abuse the player had received from his own and decided they wanted some of the action. The authorities, as with Skacel, were embarrassingly silent.
After one bad game in 2007, Mikoliunas found himself to be the main subject of the main opinion piece of a major tabloid's football supplement. The columnist, while not resorting to any form of racism, still managed to convey the impression to the reader that Mikoliunas was football's version of the Devil Incarnate saying that he exemplified everything that was wrong with the game. Despite there being plenty of Scottish candidates that could have been highlighted for such a rant, the Lithuanian was to be his chosen target.
Abused by his own supporters, slated by opposing fans and singled out by the media for special treatment, Mikoliunas kept quiet about all of this. Some praised him for having the courage to turn the other cheek. However, he was biding his time for a day of reckoning and Scottish football's chickens came home to roost on September 8th, 2007 at Hampden Park.
Scotland were playing LIthuania in a crucial European Championship qualifier. Despite going a goal down, Lithuania were starting to get the upper hand with Mikoliunas in particular causing the Scots all sorts of problem. Then after an hour, Mikoliunas exacted his cold-dished revenge.
As he ran into the Scotland penalty area, the winger saw in the corner of his eye Darren Fletcher sliding in to make a tackle. As the Scot closed in on him, Mikoliunas then pulled off a dive to make out that Fletcher had fouled him. The referee bought his act of cheating and gave Lithuania a penalty from which they equalised.
The minute Mikoliunas had done it, you knew that this was payback for all the abuse that he had received in the 12 months before this game. Despite the fact that Scotland recovered to win, and that Garry O'Connor had, prior to the Lithuanian's dive, attempted one himself (which didn't fool the referee), the self-righteous indignation that came pouring out could be said to be unprecedented.
One tabloid writer in his match report referred to Mikoliunas as a "w*****", while not applying the same standard to O'Connor who had tried a con job of his own.
The presenter of the license-payer-funded state broadcaster who was fronting the radio show covering the game went further. Upset at what Mikoliunas had done, he launched a tirade against the player which brought out the inner Alf Garnett in him when he uttered out the horrendous turn of phrase:
As with the newspaper writer, this fellow ignored O'Connor's dive. Then again, the Scotland striker was just one of the 'good ole boys' while Mikoliunas was just some sneaky foreigner.
Nothing was done. Not by the broadcaster, not by the police. It was largely accepted by Scotland fans who were all too willing to join in on the 'let's bash the Slavic cheat' act.
Had Mikoliunas' skin colour been black or his ethnicity Jewish, this 'go home' insult would have been clamped down upon with the presenter, at the very least, censured for his stupid remark.
It was an act of cheating yes, but a lack of willingness to take into account the 'cause and effect' theory was ignored. Never mind that this dive was the end product of bigoted bile this player had had to deal with from many Scots.
The Scot who dived in this game didn't get a modicum of criticism from his nation's supporters and media. The Slav who did, received a whirlwind of abuse.
Celtic's Artur Boruc was another who found himself to be the target of uneducated bigots. The 'refugee' chant was also aimed at the Polish international goalkeeper from opposing fans. Boruc though would be more confrontational than the likes of Skacel and Mikoliunas.
He would often give as good as he got back to his abusers yet he would be the one criticised for doing this with many calling into radio phone-ins to label him as a 'disgrace' .
No one seemed to be interested in the vile shouts that would provoke a reaction from him. They should have been. After all, were he black, Asian or Jewish, there would have been an outpouring of sympathy with those phoning in on the airwaves ready to back him.
Instead he was slated for being so confrontational with 'know your place young man' being the message that was all too visible between the lines. It was just as well that he was willing to meet such bigotry head on back in May 2007.
Magda Kucko was a 27-year-old pregnant woman who had moved to the UK with her family following Poland being accepted into the EU. While walking through a Glasgow park, she was attacked by three thugs who were not only screaming racial abuse at her but threatening to let loose the two snarling doberman dogs they had with them on her.
Fortunately for Kucko, Boruc was also taking a stroll through the park and upon seeing the incident, he rushed to Magda's aid and chased the thugs away. He later escorted the frightened woman to hospital to ensure that both she and the baby she was carrying were unharmed. Kucko said of Boruc afterwards:
"Artur is a very brave man. I cannot bear to think what might have happened if he had not been there for us. We will never forget his courage."
Unfortunately, the likes of Boruc can't be everywhere to help those of Slavic origin subjected to racist attacks as this link illustrates:
Fast forward to today and it seems we have come full circle. Rudi Skacel is still the target of bigotry based on his ethnicity.
A poll done by Hibs fans forum Hibs.net in April 2011 asked its members if it was ever acceptable to sing the Skacel (ie. Refugee) song. Although over 60 per cent said no, it was still disturbing to see that a combined 34 per cent said that they saw nothing wrong with it or didn't sing it but had no objection to others doing so.
In January 2012, Dunfermline fan, Andrew Irvine, was fined £200 at Dunfermline Sheriff Court for shouting "refugee" and "go home" at Skacel during a Dunfermline home league match against Hearts in October 2011.
Today, there is currently an ongoing police investigation into Celtic striker, Leigh Griffiths, allegedly singing the refugee song about Skacel in an Edinburgh pub prior to a Hearts game against Hibs in March of last year.
It seems that with the last two instances, the authorities are finally waking up to the fact that an added element of racism has taken root within Scottish and British society but they need to up their game.
The Skacel refugee song can still be heard, despite the Czech not having played in Scotland for the past two years, while in October 2012 when at Southampton, Boruc was racially abused by his own supporters during a match against Tottenham and took his own action by throwing his water bottle at those shouting it.
Matters are not helped when the nation's state broadcaster continually gives the leader of UKIP a regular platform to whip up hysteria about Eastern European migrants which has a knock-on effect in both society and in football where people, be they footballers or from other working trades, are subjected to ill-informed abuse.
Britain likes to pride itself as a tolerant nation.
It's high time she started acting like one.