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Monday, 22 July 2019

Juventus's Matuidi says he was racially abused at Cagliari

Reuters , Sunday 7 Jan 2018
Juventus
Juventus' French midfielder Blaise Matuidi (AFP)
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Juventus midfielder Blaise Matuidi says he was the subject of racial abuse during their 1-0 win at Cagliari on Saturday, days after fellow Serie A side Verona were sanctioned after their supporters directed similar abuse towards the Frenchman.

"Today I experienced racism during the match. Weak people try to intimidate with hate. I am not a hater and can only be sorry for those who set bad examples," Matuidi wrote on his official Facebook account after Saturday's game.

"Football is a way to spread equality, passion and inspiration and this is what I am here for. Peace."

Italian media said that Matuidi complained to match officials about the alleged abuse but no action was taken.

Cagliari could not immediately be reached for comment and there was no official statement from Juventus or Serie A.

Serie A's disciplinary tribunal usually announces sanctions on the first working day after a full round of matches has been completed, meaning the incident could be dealt with on Monday.

Verona were fined 20,000 euros ($24,056) and given a suspended partial stadium ban after supporters racially abused the 30-year-old following his opening goal during Juventus's 3-1 away win on Dec. 30.

Serie A's disciplinary tribunal said that Verona's Curva Sud (South Curve) would be closed for one match if there was a repeat incident within a year.

Matuidi, who has 62 caps for France, joined Juventus before the start of the current season and has scored twice, both in the league, for the Italian champions.

Cagliari were also involved in an incident last season when Ghanaian midfielder Sulley Muntari walked off in protest during a match for Pescara away to the Sardinian side.

Muntari said the referee had booked him for dissent when he complained about racist abuse from some fans. He was given a second yellow card for leaving the pitch without permission, triggering an automatic one-match ban which was later overturned by the Italian football federation (FIGC).

Serie A's disciplinary tribunal took no action against Cagliari, saying that only around 10 supporters were involved in abusing Muntari.

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