Italian football vows to combat its ‘serious problem’ with racism
The 20 teams in the country’s best division, Serie A, written an open letter saying that it was important to”openly acknowledge” the problems confronting the game after numerous incidents this season.
Recently, Brescia striker Mario Balotelli stated he experienced racial abuse by opposition Verona fans and Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku was the field of monkey chants from Cagliari fans before this season.
“We have to openly recognize that we’ve got a critical issue with racism. It is a problem that we have not done enough to combat through time,” read the letter, printed on Friday.
“Images of gamers being racially abused in Italian soccer have been seen and discussed all over the world this year and that shames us all.
“No individual should be subjected to racist abuse — indoors or out of soccer — and we can no longer stay silent on this problem or wait patiently for it to magically disappear.”
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Verona was provided a stadium that was partial closure following racist abuse aimed at Balotelli while Cagliari escaped any punishment.
Serie A stated it intends to set its”comprehensive and robust” anti-racism policy which guaranteed stricter legislation and plans to educate people within the sport.
“We do not have time to waste,” the letter added.
“We must now act with speed, with intention and together with unity and we call on you, the fans, to encourage us in this vitally important endeavor.”
Racism has blighted football this seasonand on the global stage.
Last weekend, teams at Dutch football’s two divisions refused to perform their games’ opening moment .