Romelu Lukaku: Juventus handed one-match partial stadium closure after fans racially abused Inter Milan striker


Juventus have been handed a one-match partial stadium closure after fans racially abused Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku.

Lukaku was subjected to racist chanting before being sent off in Inter’s 1-1 Coppa Italia draw with Juve on Tuesday.

Serie A have ruled that the lower tier of Allianz Stadium’s South Stand will be closed for Juventus’s league game against Napoli on 23 April, following racist chanting from “the majority of fans” sat in that section before and during Lukaku’s stoppage-time penalty.

The 29-year-old was shown a second yellow card for putting his finger to his lips in front of the home fans after his late equaliser in the semi-final first leg.

Lukaku will serve a one-match ban for his red card, while Juventus midfielder Juan Cuadrado and Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic have also been handed bans after a row broke out after the final whistle.

Cuadrado, Juve’s goalscorer, has been given a three-match suspension for grabbing Handanovic by the neck and punching him, while the Inter captain has been banned for one match for his role in the fight.

Earlier on Thursday, Lukaku’s representatives – sports agency Roc Nation – said sport should “hold bigots accountable”, adding “hatred equals racism equals ignorance”.

Taking out a full-page advert in Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, it wrote: “Dear Italy, do better, want better, be better.”

Lukaku said on Instagram after the game in Turin that “history repeats itself”, adding that he also faced racist abuse in 2019.

Roc Nation said: “In professional football, Black players have been subjected to hatred during professional football games.

“The hatred has displayed itself in the form of monkey chants, racial slurs and banana peels tossed at the best players in the world, as the world watches, as the children watch, as the players’ families watch.

“No-one has faced any consequences for this heinous behaviour. Nothing has changed. No action has been taken.

“In fact, the only person that could be held accountable is a player, if they react to this disgusting behaviour during the game. Enough is enough.

“We call on the worldwide community of sports – players, team owners, artists, brands, and all fans – to denounce the racist behaviour and hold bigots accountable to a human standard. One which upholds decency, respect and compassion for others.”

Italy’s football federation, the FIGC, will mark its anti-discrimination campaign #UnitiDagliStessiColori (#Unitedbythesamecolours) at all levels of the game this weekend.

Inter play at Salernitana in Serie A on Friday at 16:00 BST.


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