Brighton boss Chris Hughton has called for the Football Association to clamp down on derogatory chanting after Gaetan Bong was targeted by West Brom fans.
The defender was subjected to boos and chants when he came on as a substitute in the Seagulls’ 3-1 extra time FA Cup fourth round replay win.
It was his first return to The Hawthorns after he accused Baggies striker Jay Rodriguez of a racist comment last season.
Rodriguez was charged by the Football Association but the allegation was “not proven” having claimed he told Bong his breath smelled, with Albion fans singing Bong was a “smelly b******” on Wednesday.
“It’s down the authorities and governors of our game, and what we see and hear, for people to deal with,” said Hughton, who called the booing of Bong by Burnley fans in support of former player Rodriguez last season “shameful”.
“It’s not nice but the game has done very well in recent years in picking up on anything they need to and the original case was dealt with very well by the FA.
“You are going to hear things you think are unfair and don’t want to hear and that then becomes the responsibility of others.
“I heard them, it’s difficult not to but I prefer to talk about the individual. We have an outstanding individual and our support goes to our players.”
Brighton fans also aimed chants at Rodriguez, calling him a racist, and West Brom boss Darren Moore insisted he did not hear the songs towards Bong.
He said: “I didn’t hear the chant. I heard the chorus of boos. We know what the incident was.
“The game is finished and over with, we move on. We can’t let these things overshadow the game.”
Brighton progressed after Glenn Murray scored twice in extra time to set up a fifth round visit of Derby next week.
Florin Andone had levelled after Kyle Bartley’s odd opener, where the defender hooked in from point blank range while almost standing off the pitch.
But Andone was lucky to still be on the pitch after catching Sam Field with a first-half elbow.
“Normally if there’s any incident generally I know about it. I haven’t seen it and no-one has mentioned it to me,” added Hughton.
The Baggies hit the crossbar through Hal Robson-Kanu after Leon Balogan also hit the woodwork for the visitors.
The hosts played the final 20 minutes of extra time with 10 men after Robson-Kanu limped off with the Baggies having made all their changes.
Moore added: “There were some youngsters who performed admirable for the club. It looked we’d be able to see the game out but I knew the pressure would come.
“When it did come there was a little bit of indecision by us and they showed why they are where they are in the Premier League.”