Mario Balotelli walks off pitch after racist abuse as Brescia clash is suspended

Mario Balotelli booted the ball out of play and attempted to leave the pitch after suffering racist abuse from Verona fans.

Posted Monday, November 04, 2019 by

Mario Balotelli walks off pitch after racist abuse as Brescia clash is suspended
Soccer Football - Serie A - Brescia v Inter Milan - Stadio Mario Rigamonti, Brescia, Italy - October 29, 2019 Brescia's Mario Balotelli reacts REUTERS/Daniele Mascolo

Mario Balotelli tried to walk off the pitch against Verona after the Brescia striker was racially abused by supporters in the stands.

Play was suspended as the officials used the tannoy system to demand fans stop the sickening chants.

The former Manchester City and Liverpool forward was challenging for the ball when he became incensed by noises from the crowd.

He booted the ball in their direction and left the pitch before his team-mates persuaded him to return.

It is the second incident this weekend alone in Serie A where a black player has been targeted by bigoted fans.

Kalidou Koulibaly was subjected to monkey chants from Roma fans yesterday in Napoli's 2-1 defeat.

The match was temporarily halted by match officials who pleaded with the fans to curb their racism.

Serie A has been fraught with racist incidents this season, with Romelu Lukaku another victim of hideous abuse.

Cagliari fans could be clearly heard making monkey noises towards the former Manchester United man.

However, league officials failed to punish the Italian outfit for the incident - instead fining them for throwing bottles.

And in a shocking move, Inter Milan fans appeared to back their opposition's supporters.

A statement from ultra group Curva Nord defended the actions of the Cagliari fans, insisting it was a badge of honour.

It read: "Hi Romelu. We are writing you on behalf of Curva Nord, yes the guys who welcomed you at your arrival in Milan.

"We are really sorry you thought that what happened in Cagliari was racist. You have to understand that Italy is not like many other north European countries where racism is a REAL problem.

"We understand that it could have seemed racist to you, but it is not like that. In Italy we use some ‘ways’ only to ‘help our teams’ and to try to make our opponents nervous, not for racism but to mess them up."

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