Adebayo Akinfenwa has told talkSPORT he feels let down by the Football Association after the person who called him a fat water buffalo escaped punishment from the governing body.
The Wycombe Wanderers striker alleged to hear the remark from a Fleetwood Town representative during last seasons League One play-off semi-final.
Akinfenwa says he was subjected to racial abuse as Wycombe booked their place in the League One Play-Off final – which Wanderers eventually won to seal promotion to the Championship
Akinfenwa says he felt angry, frustrated and dehumanised after the incident, and reported it to the FA.
But, while the FA said that it was satisfied the insult was used towards the 38-year-old, they claimed there was not sufficient evidence to charge the Fleetwood employee for a breach of FA Rule E3(2) – making reference to ethnic origin, race and/or nationality.
The FA commissioned a report from an independent expert in race relations which concluded that the words were not objectively racist.
Wycombe are not happy with the outcome of the investigation, and said in a statement there is no place in sport for such comments.
And Akinfenwa joined talkSPORT on Friday to issues his own response to the ruling, and said its no wonder players feel theres no point reporting incidents of racist abuse when the FA do nothing about it.
I wont sugar coat it, I think the FA have let me down, he told talkSPORT host Jim White.
They keep promoting that we should report incidents, and they want change, they want a better society and they want a better system.
But I report it, and I feel like they had a chance to say, even if it is a grey area for them, ‘lets stamp it out’, but I feel they let me down.
I dont understand how its a lack of evidence.
Theyve come out and stated that they accept the comment was made, but they cannot prove that it was racial.
They told me that it either can be deemed as racist or it cannot be deemed as racist, but theyre going to air on the side of caution of it not being racist.
Theres no grey area for me. Thats the disappointing thing.
They had the opportunity here right now to stamp it out going forward, to say theres no grey area, that you cannot use this terminology, that you cannot use this sort of language and shut it down right now.
The most disappointing thing for me in this situation is the FA keep saying, report these incidents, but it got reported and nothing came out of it!
Akinfenwa overcame the incident against Fleetwood and later helped Wycombe seal promotion to the Championship
For me, there was no positive [intent] in calling me a fat water buffalo.
Its not ever banter. If I called you [speaking to Jim] a water buffalo it wouldnt mean the same thing, as you have no direct identification with that sort of animal. It was dehumanising because of the manner he used it in.
If he called me a fat pig, I wouldnt have said it was racist, I would have just said he disrespected me. But if you call me a fat water buffalo, theres a difference. Its wrong.
Race is a triggered word, its an uncomfortable conversation. When we start adding race to it, all of a sudden certain people get tense.
I get comments like why are you making it racial? and why is it a race thing?. Why do people think using my skin colour is me go-to? it baffles me!
Im a father and I would say to my kids, if someone is doing you wrong report it, thats the protocol you should follow.
The system, whether thats a school or the FA, the system thats there to protect you, report it so we can make a long standing change.
Of course its disheartening [that it hasnt been acted upon]. But if we want change weve got to continue to report it and weve got to continue standing up and paying attention so change can happen.