FIGC lay out anti-racism plans

The Italian football association has urged players not to walk off the pitch if they are subjected to racist abuse.

Last Updated: 10/01/13 at 08:18 Post Comment

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The Italian football association (FIGC) has told players not to follow the lead of Kevin-Prince Boateng and walk off the pitch if they are subjected to racist abuse.

The FIGC reaffirmed its policy for a pitchside 'director' to decide whether to suspend matches in such circumstances - a move that echoes FIFA president Sepp Blatter's calls earlier this week.

AC Milan midfielder Boateng left the pitch, followed by his team-mates, after he was subjected to racist taunts during a friendly against lower-league Pro Patria last week.

The Ghana international's action have since earned widespread praise while the FIGC have vowed to remove racism from stands across the country.

Part of that move has seen the governing body meet the Osservatorio - the organisation tasked with security and safety at stadia in Italy - to discuss the procedure surrounding racist incidents.

Those discussions were detailed in simultaneous statements from both organisations - which included calling for players to remain on the pitch - but also revealed matches could be suspended to warn fans about their behaviour.

The Osservatorio statement detailed the exact process, saying: "In the event of racism, intolerance or anti-Semitism, the referee and players will report through the fourth official to a director for public safety, someone solely responsible for making the decision to end a game.

"A report will be filed to the Federal Prosecutor's office. In the event of serious racism or intolerance the game can be suspended temporarily to broadcast warning messages through PA systems in the stadia."

FIGC general manager Antonello Valentini, who met with Osservatorio officials this week, welcomed the statement.

"Following on from yesterday's meeting, my continued presence here today is an opportunity to make sure no-one thinks we are underestimating the problem," he said.

"The FIGC has always paid maximum attention to the issue, in line with state and sporting laws.

"The refinements to certain procedures that the Osservatorio have outlined today are based on yesterday's talks and are aimed at making stadia and sport venues more civilised places.

"These kind of events must not be allowed to continue. The plan is to ban racists from the stadia and we are grateful to the Ministry of the Interior and the Osservatorio for what they are doing about it and what they will continue to do."

Last week FIFA boss Blatter called for harsher sanctions to deal with racism, but warned that players should not walk off the pitch.

Blatter had appeared to suggest that players could use racism as an excuse to walk off during a game if they were losing.

Speaking at a conference in the Middle East, Blatter told United Arab Emirates newspaper The National: "Walk off? No. I don't think that is the solution.

"I don't think you can run away, because eventually you can run away if you lose a match.

"This issue is a very touchy subject, but I repeat there is zero tolerance of racism in the stadium; we have to go against that.

"The only solution is to be very harsh with the sanctions - and the sanctions must be a deduction of points or something similar."

Pro Patria have subsequently been ordered to play their next match behind closed doors.

Italian police have also confirmed six people are under investigation for their role in the incident, including Riccardo Grittini, 21, who is a representative of Italian political party Lega Nord.


Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week


More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

think Finnegans Wake would have been a better reference point than Ulysses. Far more rambling and incomprehensible.

debra2927
Football People On TV: Garth Crooks

I

f I recall correctly, Degsy predicted a 100/1 shot correctly the week after his 150/1 Blackpool 4 - 3 Bolton call. I stuck a fiver on it as an idle bet. Paid for a stag do in Munich. Heady days...

baldini
Backing Hull To Beat United 2-1...

R

odgers prefers Joe Allen to Lucas? If this is true then I'm setting aside a fortnight to finally learn the rules of American Football and I'll give up on real football.

godzilla
The Jammy Gossip

Footer 365

Alan Pardew not sure Crystal Palace can match fine season in 2015-16

Alan Pardew says it is going to be difficult to repeat Crystal Palace's sensational second half of the season when the 2015-16 campaign starts.

Tim Sherwood expects Christian Benteke to remain Aston Villa player

Tim Sherwood is convinced Christian Benteke wants to stay at Aston Villa, although he has not broached the subject with him.

Steve Bruce at a loss to explain Hull City's dreadful season

Hull City boss Steve Bruce had no idea his side would be in a relegation fight after building what he saw as a strong squad last summer.

Mail Box

Only One Real Manager Of The Year

Winning the Premier League with the best squad in the Premier League is only par; Ronald Koeman did a whole lot better. Plus, the last word on Raheem and...

Don't Slate Sterling For Ambition...

Raheem Sterling deserves credit for his desire to quit Liverpool, according to one mailboxer. Also: why football should not be compared to business and Degsy's latest spot of bother...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company