Premier League referee Mike Dean has asked to be stood down from games after receiving death threats to himself and family.
Dean was sent a torrent of online abuse after sending off West Ham player Tomas Soucek.
Television football pundits Gary Lineker and Ian Wright criticised the decision.
The red card was later rescinded by the Football Association.
Merseyside Police are “investigating allegations of malicious communications” after Dean, 52, from the Wirral, complained about the abuse.
So far, no arrests have been made.
Richard Masters, the Premier League’s chief executive, said:
“It is completely unacceptable that we are seeing abusive behaviour aimed at players, managers and match officials regularly on social media platforms
“Mike and his family have our full support in reporting this to the police.
“This once again highlights the need for greater proactive intervention from social media companies to stop online abuse and identify offenders.”
Oliver Dowden, the Culture Secretary, said:
“We are going to change the law to make social media companies more accountable for what happens on their platforms and they can start showing their duty of care to players today by weeding out racist abuse now.
“Players must not be abused for doing their jobs, enough is enough.”