A MAN has been arrested after reports were made of racist abuse directed at Newcastle United on a social network site.

The 29-year-old man was detained by Northumbria Police after complaints were received about the racist tweet yesterday.

He is being held in custody pending further inquiries today.

The comment was said to have been posted on the Twitter site following news that United were in the process of signing Senegalese striker Papiss Demba Cisse from German club Freiburg.

The slur is believed to have made reference to the number of black players now in the Newcastle ranks.

It is understood to have been made from an account which was later deleted.

Northumbria Police gave brief details of the arrest in a short statement today.

A force spokeswoman confirmed action was taken in relation to, "a racist tweet directed towards Newcastle United".

She said: "We have received a report of racist comments being made on Twitter.

"Northumbria Police takes all reports of racist abuse very seriously and inquiries are being conducted.

"A 29-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the incident and is currently in custody."

Following the reports of the tweet United issued a statement condemning the comments last night.

A club spokesman said: "Newcastle United is appalled by the racist comments made on Twitter in reference to the club and its players.

"Newcastle United has a zero tolerance approach to racism and will be working with Northumbria Police to identify those responsible for such abhorrent remarks."

Numerous complaints were said to have been received by the force from about 6pm yesterday, only hours after news emerged of United’s impending signing of Cisse.

The prolific 26-year-old striker is set to become the latest bearer of the club’s hallowed number nine shirt.

Cisse was on Tyneside yesterday to finalise the transfer, signing a five-and-a-half year contract in a deal reported at £7.5m, potentially rising to £9m.

He immediately flew back to join his national team-mates, include his new United strike partner Demba Ba, preparing for Senegal’s opening match in the Africa Cup of Nations tournament, against Zambia, in the Equatorial Guinea capital of Bata, on Saturday night.