FIFA Demands Forfeit For Teams With Racist Fans After 'Abhorrent' Incident
In an unprecedented move, FIFA demands forfeit for teams with racist fans. FIFA President Gianni Infantino's bold proposal comes on the heels of what he described as "totally abhorrent" incidents during Saturday's matches at Udinese and Sheffield Wednesday.Jan 23, 20245911 Shares90944 Views
In an unprecedented move, FIFAdemands forfeit for teams with racist fans. FIFA President Gianni Infantino's bold proposal comes on the heels of what he described as "totally abhorrent" incidents during Saturday's matches at Udinese and Sheffield on Wednesday. The dramatic events unfolded at the Stadio Friuli in Udine, where AC Milan's players, under the leadership of goalkeeper Mike Maignan, took a stand against racial abuse. Maignan reported hearing monkey noises emanating from a section of the crowd, prompting the entire team to temporarily leave the pitch in protest. Despite the adversity, Milan's players regrouped and secured a resounding 3-2 victory in the Serie A clash against Udinese. Mike Maignan wearing an orange long sleeves football uniform
In a strong response to recent racist incidents in Italy's Serie A and England's Championship, FIFA president Gianni Infantino has called for stringent measures against teams whose fans engage in racist abuse. The incidents in question involved AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan and Coventry midfielder Kasey Palmer.
Maignan made headlines when he briefly left the pitch during AC Milan's 3-2 victory against Udinese due to repeated racist chants from home fans. The goalkeeper, who had previously experienced similar abuse in a game at Cagliari two seasons ago, took a stand by alerting the referee and leading his teammates off the pitch. Maignan emphasized the need for stronger sanctions against those responsible, stating:
They must hand out very strong sanctions, because talking no longer does anything.- Mike Maignan
FIFA president Gianni Infantino echoed Maignan's sentiments in a statement, declaring the events in Udine and Sheffield Wednesday as "totally abhorrent and completely unacceptable." He proposed a comprehensive approach to combating racism, suggesting automatic defeat for teams whose fans commit racism and cause a match to be abandoned. Infantino also called for worldwide stadium bans and criminal charges for individuals involved in racist incidents.
In addition to the three-step process [match stopped, match stopped again, and match abandoned], we need to enforce automatic defeat for the team whose fans committed racism and caused the match to be abandoned, as well as worldwide stadium bans and criminal charges for racists.- Gianni Infantino
Maignan further emphasized the need for accountability within the entire system in a post on social media. Maignan wrote, calling for a united front against racism.
The perpetrators of these acts, the spectators who were in the stand, who saw everything, who heard everything but who chose to remain silent, you are complicit.- Mike Maignan
Coventry midfielder Kasey Palmer also addressed the racist treatment he endured in a post, highlighting the disgrace of racism and its unwelcome presence in both the world and football. Despite the challenges, Palmer expressedgratitude for the support received, emphasizing that a couple of fans engaging in racist behavior should not define an entire fan base.
Disappointed to even have to come on here & write this. Racism is a disgrace... it has no place in the world, let alone football. I'm Black and proud and I am raising my three kids to be the exact same. I'll be honest, it feels like things will never change, no matter how hard we try.- Kasey Palmer As the footballcommunity grapples with these incidents, there is a growing consensus that swift and severe action is needed to root out racism and ensure a safe and inclusive environment for all players. In a decisive stance against racism in football, FIFAPresident Gianni Infantino has called for sweeping measures, including worldwide stadium bans for fans and the implementation of "automatic forfeits" for teams facing discriminatory incidents. The head of the international governing body emphasized on Sunday that discrimination has no place in footballor broader society.
These statements come in response to the distressing racist incidents that marred club matches in Italy and England, notably the monkey chants directed at AC Milan's goalkeeper, Mike Maignan, during their 3-2 victory at Udinese, leading to a temporary halt in the game.