Barrow AFC have pledged to investigate after Colchester United's former Carlisle United goalkeeper Shamal George said he was racially abused in tonight's game in south Cumbria.

The Holker Street club have appealed for witnesses as they promised to take "the strongest action possible" against the perpetrators.

An announcement was made over the public address system in the first half of Friday night's League Two game, which Colchester won 3-2.

It said there had been a complaint of racism against George, allegedly made from an area behind the goal containing home fans.

The announcement said Barrow had a zero tolerance approach to racism and that any such instances should be reported.

After Colchester tweeted during the game that they "stand with Shamal" and that there was no place for racism or any form of discrimination in the game or in wider society, head coach Hayden Mullins later confirmed that George had been the victim of racism.

He told BBC Essex after the game: "Sham was racially abused. I've heard what was said and it's difficult to take. We're in 2021 and you can't believe it's still going on.

"Sham heard what was said and it's difficult. But he got his head back in the game. It makes the win that bit more special."

George, after the game, tweeted about Colchester's victory: "This team...what a big win that is. Hope the racists enjoyed that one."

He also said he appreciated the support he had received.

Team-mate Frank Nouble also used social media to slam "the little coward racist" who had abused the 23-year-old.

Barrow later issued a statement on the matter.

It said: "We are aware of an allegation of racist abuse being directed at a Colchester United player during Friday evening’s Sky Bet League Two fixture at The Dunes Hotel Stadium.

"The club would like to make it absolutely clear that we abhor discrimination in all its forms and will take the strongest action possible, including pursuing life bans, for anyone found guilty of racism.

"We will be conducting a thorough investigation and would appeal to any fans who may have witnessed any discriminatory abuse to please come forward and help us identify any perpetrators.

"Fans can contact us confidentially with any information via"

George played for Carlisle during the 2017/18 season whilst on loan from Liverpool. This is his second season with Colchester.