Ifill 'racially abused' during loss to Adelaide

Travelling Wellington Phoenix fans celebrate during the win over Perth Glory.
Travelling Wellington Phoenix fans celebrate during the win over Perth Glory.
Wellington Phoenix players celebrate after scoring against Perth Glory.
Wellington Phoenix players celebrate after scoring against Perth Glory.
Leo Bertos (left) competes for the ball with Joshua Risdon of Perth Glory.
Leo Bertos (left) competes for the ball with Joshua Risdon of Perth Glory.
Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix competes for the ball against Labinot Haliti of the Wanderers.
Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix competes for the ball against Labinot Haliti of the Wanderers.
Adam D'Apuzzo of the Wanderers competes for the ball against Corey Gameiro of the Phoenix.
Adam D'Apuzzo of the Wanderers competes for the ball against Corey Gameiro of the Phoenix.
 Jeremy Brockie (L) and Corey Gameiro (C) of the Phoenix celebrate after Brockie scored a goal.
Jeremy Brockie (L) and Corey Gameiro (C) of the Phoenix celebrate after Brockie scored a goal.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix celebrates after scoring his team's first goal against Western Sydney.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix celebrates after scoring his team's first goal against Western Sydney.
Phoenix fans show their support for former coach Ricki Herbert.
Phoenix fans show their support for former coach Ricki Herbert.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix shows his disappointment after a missed shot at goal.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix shows his disappointment after a missed shot at goal.
Corey Gameiro of the Phoenix tackles Ruben Zadkovich of the Jets.
Corey Gameiro of the Phoenix tackles Ruben Zadkovich of the Jets.
Ben Sigmund has words with the referee after the Phoenix's loss to Adelaide.
Ben Sigmund has words with the referee after the Phoenix's loss to Adelaide.
Sam Gallaway of the Jets and Paul Ifill of the Phoenix compete for the ball.
Sam Gallaway of the Jets and Paul Ifill of the Phoenix compete for the ball.
Corey Gameiro, left, and Jeremy Brockie celebrate Brockie's goal.
Corey Gameiro, left, and Jeremy Brockie celebrate Brockie's goal.
Leo Bertos runs with the ball.
Leo Bertos runs with the ball.
Antony Golec of Adelaide runs with the ball.
Antony Golec of Adelaide runs with the ball.
Wellington’s Jeremy Brockie, left, and Antony Golec jump for the ball.
Wellington’s Jeremy Brockie, left, and Antony Golec jump for the ball.
Louis Fenton goes up for a header against Central Coast Mariners.
Louis Fenton goes up for a header against Central Coast Mariners.
Bernie Ibini (left) and Daniel McBreen celebrate a goal for Central Coast Mariners.
Bernie Ibini (left) and Daniel McBreen celebrate a goal for Central Coast Mariners.
Bernie Ibini takes on the Phoenix's Ian Hogg.
Bernie Ibini takes on the Phoenix's Ian Hogg.
Phoenix players celebrate Jeremy Brockie's goal against the Perth Glory.
Phoenix players celebrate Jeremy Brockie's goal against the Perth Glory.
Phoenix fans show their support at Eden Park.
Phoenix fans show their support at Eden Park.
Isaka Cernak heads the ball from Perth's Liam Miller in the Phoenix's 1-0 win.
Isaka Cernak heads the ball from Perth's Liam Miller in the Phoenix's 1-0 win.
Phoenix's Stein Huysegems and Perth's Steven McGarry contest the ball.
Phoenix's Stein Huysegems and Perth's Steven McGarry contest the ball.
Tyler Boyd and Jets' Jobe Wheelhouse compete for the ball during the 1-1 draw.
Tyler Boyd and Jets' Jobe Wheelhouse compete for the ball during the 1-1 draw.
Andrew Durante gets in the way of Jets player Ryan Griffiths.
Andrew Durante gets in the way of Jets player Ryan Griffiths.
Manny Muscat and Jets' Joshua Brillante compete for the ball.
Manny Muscat and Jets' Joshua Brillante compete for the ball.
Louis Fenton celebrates his goal against the Jets with Daniel Sanchez.
Louis Fenton celebrates his goal against the Jets with Daniel Sanchez.
Fabio and Tyler Boyd compete for the ball during the Phoenix's 7-1 loss to Sydney FC.
Fabio and Tyler Boyd compete for the ball during the Phoenix's 7-1 loss to Sydney FC.
Andrew Durante reacts to conceding a penalty against Sydney FC.
Andrew Durante reacts to conceding a penalty against Sydney FC.
Leo Bertos of the Phoenix reacts to a Sydney goal during the round 17.
Leo Bertos of the Phoenix reacts to a Sydney goal during the round 17.
Alessandro Del Piero celebrates one of his four goals against the Phoenix.
Alessandro Del Piero celebrates one of his four goals against the Phoenix.
Alessandro Del Piero and Vince Lia compete for the ball.
Alessandro Del Piero and Vince Lia compete for the ball.
Stein Huysegems misses a goal against Western Sydney.
Stein Huysegems misses a goal against Western Sydney.
Louis Fenton playing against Western Sydney.
Louis Fenton playing against Western Sydney.
Daniel Sanchez attempts to make a break agaisnt Western Sydney.
Daniel Sanchez attempts to make a break agaisnt Western Sydney.
Jeremy Brockie with the ball agaisnt Western Sydney.
Jeremy Brockie with the ball agaisnt Western Sydney.
Stein Huysegems of the Wellington Phoenix talks to the referee who gave teamate Louis Fenton a yellow card for faking a dive.
Stein Huysegems of the Wellington Phoenix talks to the referee who gave teamate Louis Fenton a yellow card for faking a dive.
Billy Celeski of the Victory and Daniel Sanchez of the Phoenix compete for the ball.
Billy Celeski of the Victory and Daniel Sanchez of the Phoenix compete for the ball.
Nick Ansell of the Melbourne Victory jumps on Stein Huysegems of the Wellington Phoenix.
Nick Ansell of the Melbourne Victory jumps on Stein Huysegems of the Wellington Phoenix.
Louis Fenton is held back by Josh Rose of the Mariners.
Louis Fenton is held back by Josh Rose of the Mariners.
Dani Sanchez is congratulated by teammates Andrew Durante and Alexander Smith after scoring the equaliser against the Mariners.
Dani Sanchez is congratulated by teammates Andrew Durante and Alexander Smith after scoring the equaliser against the Mariners.
Jeremy Brockie takes a tumble during the match against Central Coast Mariners.
Jeremy Brockie takes a tumble during the match against Central Coast Mariners.
Ben Sigmund gets up in the air to challenge for the ball during the 1-1 draw with the Mariners.
Ben Sigmund gets up in the air to challenge for the ball during the 1-1 draw with the Mariners.
Tyler Boyd in action for the Phoenix in their 1-1 draw with the Mariners.
Tyler Boyd in action for the Phoenix in their 1-1 draw with the Mariners.
Paul Ifill of Phoneix is challenged by Fabio Ferreira of Adelaide during the match between Adelaide United and the Wellington Phoenix.
Paul Ifill of Phoneix is challenged by Fabio Ferreira of Adelaide during the match between Adelaide United and the Wellington Phoenix.
Manny Muscat challenges Cassio of Adelaide.
Manny Muscat challenges Cassio of Adelaide.
Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix goes for a header under pressure from Osama Malik of Adelaide.
Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix goes for a header under pressure from Osama Malik of Adelaide.
Louis Fenton of Pheonix and Osama Malik of Adeleide contest for the ball.
Louis Fenton of Pheonix and Osama Malik of Adeleide contest for the ball.
Bruce Djite of Adelaide is challenged by Andrew Durante of Phoenix during the round 11 A-League match between Adelaide United and the Wellington Phoenix.
Bruce Djite of Adelaide is challenged by Andrew Durante of Phoenix during the round 11 A-League match between Adelaide United and the Wellington Phoenix.
Sydney FC celebrate scoring against the Phoenix.
Sydney FC celebrate scoring against the Phoenix.
Phoenix fans show their support during the game against Sydney.
Phoenix fans show their support during the game against Sydney.
Alex Smith on the ball for the Phoenix.
Alex Smith on the ball for the Phoenix.
Terry McFlynn (left) of Sydney fights for possession with Ben Sigmund (centre) and Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix.
Terry McFlynn (left) of Sydney fights for possession with Ben Sigmund (centre) and Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix.
Paul Ifill of the Phoenix and Jerome Polenz of the Wanderers go for the ball.
Paul Ifill of the Phoenix and Jerome Polenz of the Wanderers go for the ball.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix in action.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix in action.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix scores.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix scores.
Louis Fenton of the Phoenix and Nikolai Topor-Stanley of the Wanderers in action.
Louis Fenton of the Phoenix and Nikolai Topor-Stanley of the Wanderers in action.
Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix in action.
Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix in action.
 Alexander Smith of the Phoenix in action.
Alexander Smith of the Phoenix in action.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix celebrates after scoring against Western Sydney.
Jeremy Brockie of the Phoenix celebrates after scoring against Western Sydney.
Alexander Smith of the Phoenix in action with Dino Kresinger of the Wanderers.
Alexander Smith of the Phoenix in action with Dino Kresinger of the Wanderers.
Shane Smeltz of the Glory and Andrew Durante of Wellington contest possession.
Shane Smeltz of the Glory and Andrew Durante of Wellington contest possession.
Jacob Burns of the Glory tackles Louis Fenton of Wellington.
Jacob Burns of the Glory tackles Louis Fenton of Wellington.
Paul Ifill of Wellington in action against the Perth Glory.
Paul Ifill of Wellington in action against the Perth Glory.
Ben Sigmund of Wellington and Chris Harold of Perth contest possession.
Ben Sigmund of Wellington and Chris Harold of Perth contest possession.
Emile Heskey of the Jets and Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix contest the ball.
Emile Heskey of the Jets and Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix contest the ball.
Ryan Griffiths of the Jets and Andrew Durante of the Phoenix fight for control.
Ryan Griffiths of the Jets and Andrew Durante of the Phoenix fight for control.
Benjamin Totori of the Phoenix.
Benjamin Totori of the Phoenix.
Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix in action.
Ben Sigmund of the Phoenix in action.
Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix and Scott Neville of the Jets go after the high ball.
Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix and Scott Neville of the Jets go after the high ball.
A stoush during the second half when Manny Muscat of Wellington was handed a yellow card.
A stoush during the second half when Manny Muscat of Wellington was handed a yellow card.
Louis Fenton of Wellignton takes a tumble.
Louis Fenton of Wellignton takes a tumble.
Paul Ifill of Wellington tackles Central Coast's Tomas Rogic.
Paul Ifill of Wellington tackles Central Coast's Tomas Rogic.
Wellington Phoenix's Alex Smith goes for a header.
Wellington Phoenix's Alex Smith goes for a header.
Wellington Phoenix's Tyler Boyd and Central Coast Mariners' Joshua Rose.
Wellington Phoenix's Tyler Boyd and Central Coast Mariners' Joshua Rose.
Adama Traore of the Victory and Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix contest for the ball.
Adama Traore of the Victory and Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix contest for the ball.
Jonathan Bru of the Victory contests with Vince Lia and Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix.
Jonathan Bru of the Victory contests with Vince Lia and Tyler Boyd of the Phoenix.
Jeremy Brockie is tackled by Diogo Ferreira during the Phoenix's loss to the Victory.
Jeremy Brockie is tackled by Diogo Ferreira during the Phoenix's loss to the Victory.
Paul Ifill battles for possession with Diogo Ferreira of the Melbourne Victory.
Paul Ifill battles for possession with Diogo Ferreira of the Melbourne Victory.
Ben Sigmund of Wellington gets away from Jeronimo Neumann of Adelaide.
Ben Sigmund of Wellington gets away from Jeronimo Neumann of Adelaide.
Leo Bertos (L) of Wellington competes with Iain Ramsay of Adelaide.
Leo Bertos (L) of Wellington competes with Iain Ramsay of Adelaide.
Louis Fenton of Wellington competes with Cassio of Adelaide.
Louis Fenton of Wellington competes with Cassio of Adelaide.
Wellington Pheonix mascot Nixie entertains the crowd before the Brisbane Roar game.
Wellington Pheonix mascot Nixie entertains the crowd before the Brisbane Roar game.
Steyn Huysegems celebrates scoring the opening goal for the Phoenix against Brisbane Roar.
Steyn Huysegems celebrates scoring the opening goal for the Phoenix against Brisbane Roar.
Mitch Nichols (left) and Manny Muscat compete for the ball.
Mitch Nichols (left) and Manny Muscat compete for the ball.
Paul Ifill tussles with Mitch Nichols of the Brisbane Roar.
Paul Ifill tussles with Mitch Nichols of the Brisbane Roar.
Heart goalkeeper Clint Bolton takes the ball during the round two A-League match between the Melbourne Heart and the Wellington Phoenix.
Heart goalkeeper Clint Bolton takes the ball during the round two A-League match between the Melbourne Heart and the Wellington Phoenix.
 Phoenix goalkeeper Jacob Spoonley kicks the ball back into play during the round two A-League match between the Melbourne Heart and the Wellington Phoenix.
Phoenix goalkeeper Jacob Spoonley kicks the ball back into play during the round two A-League match between the Melbourne Heart and the Wellington Phoenix.
Paul Ifill of the Phoenix celebrates with his teammates after he converted a penalty.
Paul Ifill of the Phoenix celebrates with his teammates after he converted a penalty.
Manny Muscat of the Phoenix challenges Mate Dugandzic of the Heart.
Manny Muscat of the Phoenix challenges Mate Dugandzic of the Heart.
Wellington Phoenix's Stein Huysegems celebrates after scoring a goal.
Wellington Phoenix's Stein Huysegems celebrates after scoring a goal.
Sydney's Alessandro Del Piero during the A-League football match between Wellington Phoenix and Sydney FC.
Sydney's Alessandro Del Piero during the A-League football match between Wellington Phoenix and Sydney FC.
Sydney's Alessandro Del Piero during the A-League football match between Wellington Phoenix and Sydney FC.
Sydney's Alessandro Del Piero during the A-League football match between Wellington Phoenix and Sydney FC.
 Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix headers the ball past Adam Griffiths of Sydney.
Stein Huysegems of the Phoenix headers the ball past Adam Griffiths of Sydney.
Terry Antonis of Sydney FC and Louis Fenton of the Phoenix compete fort he ball.
Terry Antonis of Sydney FC and Louis Fenton of the Phoenix compete fort he ball.

Wellington Phoenix star Paul Ifill claims he was the target of ''racial abuse'' from fans during last night's A-League match at Adelaide's Hindmarsh Stadium.

An upset Ifill took to Twitter after the Phoenix's 3-1 loss, saying: ''Bad times, poor result and racist abuse from a very small minority of fans. Not happy.''

Ifill, a former Barbados international who has spent the majority of his career playing in England, said the Phoenix had reported the incident.

''Been a long time since I've had to deal with anything like that... to be fair I believe it's an isolated incident have to say its a first for me in the A League.''

Ifill's claims were backed up by teammates, who also expressed their disgust on Twitter.

''Unbelievable the things I heard from the bench...it's 2012 people,'' wrote midfielder Alex Smith, who was on the bench at the time.

''I'll leave it for now but I will say it was very racist and disgraceful...''

Reserve goalkeeper Griffin McMaster described the abuse as ''unacceptable''.

''In addition racist behaviour occurred which is unacceptable, then for the alleged people to do a runner #unacceptable,'' he wrote on Twitter.

AAP reported a spectator was heard to call Ifill a derogatory racial term.
Phoenix coach Ricki Herbert refused to confirm the racial nature of the abuse.

''It's not for me to confirm or not,'' Herbert said.

But an Adelaide United spokesman said the club was aware of the incident.

''We will investigate the matter,'' the spokesman said.

Ifill was unavailable for interview last night and a Phoenix spokesman said the matter was now in the hands of Adelaide officials.

Racial abuse is a hot topic in the English Premier League.

Former England captain John Terry provided the highest profile case and eventually apologised for abusing Anton Ferdinand and accepted a four-game ban.

On the field, the Phoenix played some decent attacking football last night but had a legitimate goal disallowed and there were all sorts of problems at the other end.

Herbert's side has now dropped out of the top six, and it won't get any easier as red-hot Central Coast come to town on Saturday.

All Whites Mark Paston and Tony Lochhead will bear the brunt of the criticism for some poor defending.

Paston allowed Marcelo Carrusca's free kick to bounce into the back of the net in the 19th minute, although the goalkeeper was let down by his defenders.
Blindsided, Paston failed to lay a mitt on the ball, expecting Adelaide's Osama Malik or one of his own men to get a touch, yet no-one did.

There wasn't much the big custodian could do about Carrusca's second, however.

The classy Argentine has the sweetest left foot in the league and he let rip with a pin point shot from the edge of the box to make it 2-0 after just 24 minutes.

Paston was irate afterwards, as the back-tracking Lochhead and Andrew Durante allowed Carrusca far too much space to advance and cut back inside.

Gareth Morgan's whims aside, it meant the Phoenix had no option but attack and they deserved to reduce the deficit midway through the half.

Stein Huysegems was level with Adelaide's Iain Fyfe as Ifill sent in a shot/cross which the Belgian bundled into the back of the net - only to be wrongly adjudged offside by the linesman.

Herbert and his right hand man Chris Greenacre were rightly upset and the Phoenix, previously dudded by Jeronimo Neumann's dive, aren't having much luck with officials in Adelaide.

Frustrations started to creep into Phoenix play but in no way can they blame the decision for the defeat.

High-flying Adelaide landed the killer blow through Fabio Ferreira in stoppage time of the first half.

The Portuguese winger's run sprung the offside trap as Lochhead was left stranded and Ferreira finished well although Paston will feel he should have done better.

Glen Moss' hernia means Paston's job is safe for the time being.

Herbert's headaches intensified at halftime, as captain Durante was subbed off with a calf problem.

Manny Muscat joined club centurion Ben Sigmund in defence and the Phoenix got some reward for their attacking endeavours via Dani Sanchez.

The Spaniard, in the starting XI for the first time this season, hit the rebound in after his first shot was blocked, following nice build-up from Tyler Boyd.

In extra time Boyd then had a chance to open his A-League account but his penalty and follow-up were both saved in spectacular fashion by Eugene Galekovic.

Adelaide, rubbish last season, are showing what can be achieved with superb recruitment.

Carrusca, Ferreira and Neumann are all providing a point of difference with their technical ability while two of the Phoenix's imports - Alex Smith and Benjamin Totori - started last night's match on the bench.

And another, Huysegems, was dragged off early as he struggled to get into the flow of the match.

Stuff