Saying he heard racist insults from supporters in Verona, the Italian international wanted to leave the field, before returning after the intervention of his teammates.
The list of racist incidents in the transalpine stadiums is growing. Italian striker Mario Balotelli, denouncing racist cries, threatened to leave the field during the match between Hellas Verona and his club Brescia, Sunday, November 3, in the Italian league.
Shortly before the 60e minute of the match, after an action on the left side of the field, the Italian international seized the ball, while still in play, sent it strongly to the supporters of Verona. Furious, the former player of Nice and Marseille has designated his ears, explaining having heard something. He then went out of bounds and started to walk behind the Verona goal, as if he wanted to give up the game. " I do not play anymore ", he pitched according to the Gazzetta Dello Sport.
His teammates and very many players from Verona tried to appease "Super Mario". The game was interrupted a few minutes before a message, read by the announcer, announced that the players would definitely return to the locker room in case of a new incident of the same kind.
An announcement whistled by a large part of the spectators, while the meeting resumed, with Balotelli on the ground. If his team lost, the Italian striker scored his second goal of the season late in the game. "We are with Mario and we are against all forms of racism. Racists are ignorant, said his agent Mino Raiola, in a statement.
Verona coach refutes racist cries
A support that does not share the coach of Hellas Verona, the Croatian Ivan Juric, whose supporters have been implicated. "I'm not afraid to say it, today nothing happened. No racist cry, nothing, said the Croatian technician at the microphone of the Sky channel after the meeting. Just rooming, whistles, provocation towards a great player, that's all. "
"Racist insults disgust me. I'm called shit gypsy permanently. But today there was nothing. Not a little, not a person, nothingJuric insisted. To say the opposite is a lie. Do not tell bullshit. He is a fantastic player but where were these racist cries? Do not make a story where there is none. "
The phenomenon of racist cries is recurrent in Italian stadiums. Only since the beginning of the season, the Belgian of Inter Milan Romelu Lukaku, the Ivorian of AC Milan Frank Kessie, the Brazilian of Fiorentina Dalbert or the Englishman of the Sampdoria Genoa Ronaldo Vieira have already been victims of cries of monkeys. Without sanctions, if there were any, put a brake on the crisis. But recently, the Italian football authorities and several clubs have committed to a " zero tolerance " on the subject.