POLICE are investigating after Juninho Bacuna claimed he was racially abused by a fan for the second time this season.
Birmingham midfielder Bacuna reported the incident to the fourth official during Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at West Brom.
The former Huddersfield Town star was seen on video discussing the incident with officials on the touchline.
Bacuna continued playing after making the refereeing team aware of what he had seen.
The 26-year-old also made a similar complaint during a home clash with Huddersfield in October.
The reported racial abuse in Saturday’s game is now being investigated by West Midlands Police who released a statement regarding the incident.
It read: “We’re investigating after a Birmingham City player was racially abused during the game at The Hawthorns today.
“We’ll be looking at CCTV and working with both clubs to identify who was responsible, and offer support to the player.
“We do not tolerate racist abuse in any form either in football or society in general, and we will seek to prosecute anyone who commits hate crime.”
While managers of both clubs also spoke out following the incident, Blues boss Tony Mowbray said: “The consequences have to be severe. You can’t just say ‘Sorry, mate’.”
And Baggies gaffer Carlos Corberan said: “The club will conduct a serious investigation.”
West Brom announced they will be helping the police in their investigation in a statement of their own.
It read: “Albion will offer its full support to West Midlands Police in their criminal investigation of this matter.
“The club will also remain in contact with Birmingham City to ensure Juninho Bacuna receives the support he requires at this time.
“The club takes a strong stance against all forms of discrimination and will do all it can to ensure anyone found guilty of racism faces the toughest available legal punishment, in addition to a lifetime ban from The Hawthorns.
“Albion will continue to work with the Football Association, the EFL and all relevant authorities to rid the game of racism.”
It’s the second time in less than a week that serious matter has taken place at the Hawthorns.
The Black Country Derby between West Brom and fierce rivals Wolves in the FA Cup was marred with violence and crowd trouble during the game.
Police were forced to intervene after fighting led to fans pouring onto the pitch.
It is believed the trouble flared after some Wolves fans were found to have infiltrated the area, reserved for Albion supporters.
A number of supporters were arrested following the incident and fans were even taken to hospital with injuries.