FIFPro urges the Russian football authorities to initiate a campaign with its professional footballers in order to stamp out racism. The worldwide players’ union cannot tolerate incidents such as those with Roberto Carlos.
For the second time since Roberto Carlos joined Anzhi Makhachkala in February this year, the Brazilian wingback was confronted with a racist act from a spectator. On Wednesday a banana was thrown on the pitch towards Roberto Carlos during a game at Krylia Sovetov.
The 2002 World Cup winner reacted in disgust. He picked up the banana and threw it away, walked off the field, took off his captain’s armband and walked to the bench, indicating with two raised fingers that it was the second incident. Then he buried his head in a towel.
‘I am indignant at the disgusting behavior of the fan who actually offended not only me, but also all the players present on the pitch. And the whole Russian football’, Roberto Carlos reacted in an interview with Sport Express. ‘Such things shouldn’t be tolerated in civilized countries.'
‘I left the field on purpose because I felt very disappointed. I didn’t have any desire to continue the game. Believe me, I would do the same thing at any score.’
FIFPro supports Roberto Carlos. ‘It is very sad that yet again Roberto Carlos has to endure racism in such an overt form taking place during a Russian League game’, says Tony Higgins, board member of FIFPro Division Europe and highly involved with FIFPro’s anti-racism campaign and Show Racism the Red Card.
‘FIFPro utterly deplores actions of this nature and urges the Russian Football authorities not only to condemn this incident but to initiate a campaign with the Russian Players Union to try and eradicate this from the game.’
‘FIFPro understands why Roberto Carlos made this decision to leave the field; it is an effort to force people to find a solution, but this cannot be left to one player. The solution however must involve the players through their union and must involve educating the fans.’
- Published: 24 June 2011