AIC bid to kick out racism
Italy's players' union want racism stamped out in Serie A after three incidents at the weekend.
Last Updated: 29/03/10 6:01pm
Italy's players' union want racism stamped out in Serie A after three incidents at the weekend which saw Clarence Seedorf and Jonathan Zebina suffer abuse.
AC Milan's Dutch midfielder Seedorf was the target of racist chants from Lazio fans in Saturday's 1-1 draw, which led to the Rome club being given a 15,000 Euro fine by the Italian Soccer League on Monday.
Zebina, meanwhile, blamed racism as the cause for being slapped in the back of his neck by a supporter of his Juventus side after a 2-1 win over Atalanta.
"It is a racist act," said the defender, after being hit by a fan as he was about to board the team's bus ahead of the Atalanta clash.
"I believe one has the right to criticise the team. We, players, are fortunate.
"We have an important responsibility considering the social climate in which we live, where people are losing their jobs.
"Hence, those that pay for a ticket to watch a game can protest as long as it is done with civility."
And the Italian Footballers' Association (AIC) gave their support to the players in the wake of the incidents.
"The Italian Footballers' Association expresses total solidarity and support for Jonathan Zebina and Clarence Seedorf, who were hit by despicable incidents of racism on Sunday," said the AIC.
"In firmly condemning these shameful acts, the AIC hopes that all elements in football will work with concrete actions to combat these expressions of incivility by a violent minority that must be isolated and silenced at all costs."
Second-placed Roma were fined 25,000 Euros for a racist chant and other disturbances by their fans during Saturday's 2-1 win over leaders Inter Milan.
Italian football has a big racism problem and Juventus had to play a game behind closed doors last season because of offensive chants by their fans.