Racism in Football

Racism in football
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Espanyol identify 12 fans who racially insulted player

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BARCELONA, Spain — Spanish club Espanyol says it has identified 12 fans who racially insulted an Athletic Bilbao player in the Spanish league last weekend.

Espanyol said on Monday in a statement that nine of the fans were club members and would face punishment that could include suspension or a full-time ban.

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It said a report of its analysis of the video images of Saturday’s game at RCDE Stadium were sent to authorities.

The club reiterated its “categorical condemnation of any displays of violence and racism.”

The fans made monkey noises directed at Athletic forward Inaki Williams, who is black. Television images showed Williams confronting the section of Espanyol fans who taunted him after he was substituted late in the game in Barcelona.

The Spanish league said it will seek a partial stadium closure for Espanyol and will raise the incident with the Spanish soccer federation’s competition committee, which handles disciplinary issues.

Man City supporter banned five years for Sterling slur

Man City supporter banned for racial abuse
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A Manchester City supporter will not attend matches for five years after racially abusing Raheem Sterling.

The fan admitted that he used a slur in celebrating a Sterling goal against Bournemouth last season.

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According to The Manchester Evening News, Sterling did not hear the slur but fans around the man did and alerted authorities.

The fan, 58-year-old Ian Baldry, immediately regretted his words according to his lawyer, who remarkably claimed Sterling is one of Baldry’s favorite players.

The news comes one day after a Sicilian man was banned from all sporting events for five years after racially abusing Mario Balotelli in the fall.

Football has seen a wide variety of racial abuse incidents this season.

These increasing hateful incidents have inspired many to speak out, and led Pogba made and distributed his own anti-racism bracelets.

Fan who aimed chants at Balotelli banned from sports events

Balotelli racial abuser banned
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VERONA, Italy — A Sicilian man was banned from European sports events for five years Thursday for directing racist chants at Brescia striker Mario Balotelli.

Verona police issued the ruling after reviewing evidence from the Hellas Verona-Brescia game on Nov. 3.

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The 38-year-old man was also barred from frequenting areas that fans pass through on match days.

Balotelli angrily kicked a ball high into the stands and threatened to leave the field because of the racist chants directed at him during the game in Verona, which was suspended for several minutes.

Balotelli, who is black, was also subjected to racist chants by Lazio fans during a game last weekend.

Balotelli was born in Italy to Ghanaian immigrants and has represented the Italian national team. He recently returned to Serie A after several seasons in France.

Pogba produces, hands out anti-racism wristbands at Old Trafford

Paul Pogba anti-racism
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Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba produced and gave away anti-racism wristbands to fans at Old Trafford on Friday.

Pogba says the wristbands, which read “No to racism” and “We are one,” are his way of speaking to fans without going through what he calls “political” channels.

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The Frenchman, 26, had posted an emotional message in August after fans abused him on social media following a missed penalty kick.

He returned to the Red Devils lineup last weekend and has made two substitute appearances as he works his way to full fitness.

Pogba says he wants the stadium to be a place devoid of hate and dedicated to football. He’d prefer he didn’t have to stand up and speak out, but this is a time fo that.

From The Manchester Evening News:

“I don’t want to do president, I don’t want to do a politic guy. We are just football players. We want to enjoy that. The fans needs to enjoy coming and seeing some nice football and that’s it. So, this is to show that we’re against (racism).

He also said that he didn’t want to go through UEFA or FIFA channels to spread his message, and knew the wristbands would be a quick, unofficial way to make a personal connection on the matter.

“I think we have the chance to have this power to show things in football, on TV. People see it so I think that will make people understand some things. I think it’s ignorance. Ignorance and stuff like that, and just to show people that you are all one. We are all one.”

Football has seen a wide variety of racial abuse incidents this season:

Cheers to you, Paul.

Yaya Toure: Racism problem in football ‘can’t continue like that’

Yaya Toure racism in football
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The brazen public showings of racism in football are down to one thing, according to longtime Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure.

“Fans, people, now are more stupid than before.”

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Toure poke out Thursday, saying he’s approached FIFA about combatting the problem. He played for Chinese Super League side Qingdao Huanghai this season, scoring twice with three assists in 14 matches.

He’s says it’s going to be a long road to the erasure of such heinous incidents. Despite the commonplace nature of racism, Toure says the incidents don’t fail to stun him.

From Sky Sports:

“Of course it is shocking because we are in 2019. In 2020, 2025 we have the kids coming through – what are we going to do? You can’t continue like that.”

The incidents have been many:

We could go on.

It doesn’t help that Serie A attempted to combat increasing incidents in Italy by using monkeys in its anti-racism campaign. That came after all 20 clubs in the league united to call racism “a serious problem.”