Racist Comment: Oliseh Condemns Tavecchio’s Appointment As Italian FA President

Sunday-OlisehFormer Nigeria international and a FIFA/UEFA instructor, Sunday Oliseh, has condemned the appointment of Carlo Tavecchio as the President of the Italian Football Federation, saying it represents a “dark day for football”.

Tavecchio caused controversy during his election campaign by making a racist comment about some players being “banana eaters”.

The 71-year-old football administrator, who took 63.63% of the vote in the final round of polling to beat former AC Milan player, Demetrio Albertini, has since apologized for his remark but Oliseh wonders why he should be elected into the position after making such racist comment.

“To have someone elected who would make such a comment sends a message: ‘We don’t care’,” Oliseh told BBC Sport.

“That he won the majority of the votes makes you question if this opinion is only his or whether it is also the opinion of the general public in Italy,” added Oliseh. “It is a big problem.

“The African players in Italy will still have to do their work and give their best. Some players may want to leave but might not get the opportunity to do so.

“For years, black players have had to fight against racism just to ply their trade and it is a situation that is out of hand.”

The Head of FIFA’s anti-racism task-force, Jeffrey Webb, said “the football community is appalled” by Tavecchio’s comment and Oliseh has backed the world governing body to continue “to wage war against racism” but warns that black footballers would not be pushovers.

He said: “FIFA is making a big effort to fight racism and I applaud the steps so far, but more has to be done. It is also up to the country federations to act.

“When the Italian Federation elects a man who makes these racist comments, you have to think that it is unlikely black people would be employed by that organisation and that is a shameful thing.

“But whatever happens, whatever comments are made, we will stand as one and black people in football will not cease to exist.”

UEFA Sanction Four Clubs For Racist Incident

uefaEuropean Football governing body, UEFA, have sanctioned four clubs for the racist behaviour of some supporters during this season’s UEFA club competitions qualifiers last month.

The UEFA’s displinary panel said on Tuesday that it had ordered the partial closure of the stadia of Georgian club Chikhura Sachkhere, Hungary’s Debrecen, Romanian side Steaua Bucharest, and Slovenians Maribor.

“The fight against racism is a high priority for UEFA,” said a statement on UEFA’s website.

“The European governing body has a zero-tolerance policy towards racism and discrimination on the pitch and in the stands.”

Steaua’s sanction takes effect on Wednesday and two sections of the National Arena will be closed against the Kazakhstan champions, Aktobe, in the second leg of their third qualifying round tie.

Debrecen are expected to shut sector B of their ground after fans showed an “illicit banner” during a match against Northern Ireland’s Cliftonville.

A section of Maribor’s stadium will also be closed after racist behaviour when Zrinjski of Bosnia-Herzegovina visited.

In a fourth case from the Europa League, the displinary panel ordered Chikhura Sachkhere to close the section of its stadium used by “ultras” on Thursday when Neftchi Baku of Azerbaijan visits. It followed incidents during a goalless draw with Bursaspor of Turkey on 24 July.

The incidents involving Steaua, Debrecen and Maribor all occurred during Champions League second qualifying round matches, while Chikhura Sachkhere were in Europa League action.

All four will have to play their next home European matches with sections of their stadiums closed.

Racism: Yaya Toure Demands UEFA Sanction Against CSKA Moscow

Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has admitted that he was “furious” over racist chants from CSKA Moscow fans on Wednesday 23 October 2013.

With reports of his racist abuse from the home fans rocking the European football world, Toure has called on UEFA to take serious actions against the CSKA Moscow fans. He said:

“I’m not just disappointed, I’m furious. I’m very, very disappointed about what those fans have done today and I think UEFA has to take action because players with the same colour of skin will always be in the same position”.

“For me, as captain, I was wearing an armband which said ‘no to racism’ and I was totally disappointed.

“I want to see UEFA do something and take some action.

“We have to be as strong as possible otherwise they will continue like that.

“Maybe they could ban the stadium, I don’t know, for a couple of years or a couple of months.

“The club may say they have to educate the fans, but I think it’s enough. Too much is too much. We have to stop it now.

“I played in Ukraine. It’s not only in Eastern Europe and I have some friends who have had problems too.

“It’s stupid these people. I don’t know, it just happens in football. It’s unbelievable.

“They’re stupid, they’re just stupid. UEFA has to take action to right it otherwise I think they will just continue.”

The midfielder, complained to the referee during the second half of Manchester City’s 2-1 win in their UEFA Champions’ League Group D at the Khimki Arena where the incident reportedly happened.

Showing Racism The Red Card

Before the start of the new English Premier League and Football League season, players will receive guidance from the Professional Footballers’ Association about tackling racist language.

According to a release by the PFA, managers of all 92 clubs have been contacted by the Association asking them to ensure the players attend the sessions that will focus on what is considered banter or acceptable jibes towards opponents and what is not.

PFA Chief Executive, Gordon Taylor confirmed the decision to educate players: “Racism is still a significant problem in football; we need to avoid any embarrassment again after recent cases.”

In the interactive sessions, players will be given scenarios where abuses can occur; either from fans or from other players and be guided on the correct response to give.  They will also be warned not to use discriminatory language referring to religion or disability.

The new FA sanctions carry a minimum five-match ban for a first offence of racist or homophobic abuse. In the last two seasons, Chelsea’s defender John Terry and Liverpool’s Luis Suarez have both received bans for racial abuse.

The letter from the PFA to the managers states that “We are looking to arrange this session in the near future and would appreciate you ensuring players attend as a matter of priority.”