Martedì, 23 Ottobre 2018

Soccer: Games shouldn't be stopped for 'few' racist jeers


Rome, January 7 - Italian Interior Minister
Annamaria Cancellieri said Monday that soccer matches should not
be stopped if only a handful of fans are involved in racist
The question of when football games should be stopped is a
hot issue after AC Milan walked off in a friendly at fourth-tier
side Pro Patria last week when their black players were targeted
by racist jeers from home supporters.
Some Lazio fans could be heard making monkey chants at
Cagliari's Victor Ibarbo during a home win on Saturday but the
abuse was drowned out by the rest of the Lazio faithful and the
game proceeded.
"If a limited number of people are doing the racist chants,
it's necessary to take action against them, without suspending
the match," Cancellieri said.
"The suspension of a match must be decided with great
strictness when there are the conditions to do so, in part to
avoid this being used to deliberately have a win awarded to the
offended team.
"If, on the other hand, a significant part of the crowd
takes part in the chants, then the (interior ministry's)
public-order official should suspend the match".
Nevertheless, she praised Milan's Kevin Prince Boateng for
leading last week's walk-off.
The Ghanaian midfielder picked up the ball and kicked it
towards the supporters who were jeering and then took off his
shirt and walked off the pitch.
"This incident serves to draw attention to a phenomenon
that unfortunately is widespread and should be considered as
such and prompt reflections and more incisive action,"
Cancellieri said.
"It was a good gesture (to walk off) and it has all of my
"But it's necessary to have a very serious strategy in
place because we cannot leave the destiny of a match in the
hands of five or six people who maybe do the racist chants on
Sepp Blatter, the head of international soccer's governing
body FIFA, said at the weekend that Milan were wrong to walk
from the Pro Patria match.
"The only solution is to be very harsh with the sanctions -
and the sanctions must be a deduction of points or something
similar," Blatter said.
AC Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi disagrees.
"I'm of the opposite opinion," the ex-premier said on
Monday when asked about Blatter's comments.
"I gave my compliments to the players for their courage".
Last week Berlusconi said Milan would also walk out of
official games if there is racist chanting, including matches in
the European Champions League.

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