Skip to main content

AC Milan pair Kevin Constant and Nigel de Jong subjected to racist abuse

updated 9:48 AM EDT, Mon May 12, 2014
AC Milan defender Kevin Constant is enraged after a banana is thrown onto the pitch during his side's 2-1 defeat at Atalanta. AC Milan defender Kevin Constant is enraged after a banana is thrown onto the pitch during his side's 2-1 defeat at Atalanta.
HIDE CAPTION
Kick it out
Shameful
Punishment on horizon?
Seedorf wants action
Catalyst for change
Spanish problem
Quick thinking
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • AC Milan duo subjected to racist abuse during Milan's game at Atalanta
  • Kevin Constant and Nigel de Jong angered by banana throwing
  • AC Milan players sarcastically applauded Atalanta fans
  • Italian Football Association set to examine incident

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- The incidence of soccer supporters hurling bananas as a way of racially abusing top black footballers playing in Europe's major leagues shows no sign of abating.

AC Milan defender Kevin Constant and midfielder Nigel de Jong were left raging by the abuse during a Serie A match against Atalanta in northern Italy Sunday, while fellow teammates applauded in a sarcastic manner.

Neither Milan or Atalanta were immediately available for comment, while Liga Calcio, which runs Serie A, is expected to make a statement later on Monday.

Soccer star's reaction to tossed banana
What is UEFA financial fair play?

The FIGC, the Italian Football Federation, have opened an investigation and will issue a statement later this week.

Sunday's incident came just two weeks after Barcelona's Dani Alves captured the world's attention by eating a banana which had been thrown at him from the crowd during a league game at Villarreal in Spain's top league.

The Brazilian's quick thinking was widely acclaimed by anti-racism campaigners and he gained worldwide support through social media.

The fan was banned for life by Villarreal after throwing the banana which landed at Alves' feet as he prepared to take a corner.

One week after Alves was abused, Levante's Senegalese player Papakouli Diop claimed he had heard monkey chants from Atletico Madrid supporters.

His response was to dance in front of his alleged abusers.

It's not the first team Constant has been racially taunted. The French-born Guinean player was racially abused during a preseason friendly game against Sassuolo in July.

Constant smashed the ball into the stands and walked off the pitch after becoming enraged by racist chanting emanating from a section of supporters.

In January 2013, Constant's teammate Kevin Prince Boateng walked off the field of play after being racially abused by a number of fans during a friendly game against Pro Patria with six people hit with two-month prison sentences.

In the past the FIGC has been accused of not taking a tough enough stance against racism.

In May 2013, the organization was heavily criticized by FIFA president Sepp Blatter after it fined Roma $65,000 following the racial abuse of Milan's Mario Balotelli by the club's fans.

"What is $65,000 for such an incident? I'm not happy and I will call the Italian Federation," Blatter told the world governing body's website at the time. "That's not a way to deal with such matters."

In April 2013, Inter Milan were fined nearly $60,000 by European governing body UEFA after its fans were found guilty of "improper conduct" in chants directed towards Tottenham Hotspur striker Emmanuel Adebayor.

Two months earlier, Lazio received its fourth charge of racist behavior this season -- with Roma's city rivals having been fined nearly $300,000 after repeated fan transgressions.

In May last year, FIFA adopted tougher penalties for racist behavior during its congress in Mauritius.

Punishments for first offenses bring a warning, fine or clubs being forced to play games in empty stadiums. A second offense, or one deemed "serious," could result in demotion, a deduction of points or expulsion from a tournament.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:29 AM EDT, Sun July 27, 2014
Major League Soccer has snared another big name from England with former Chelsea star Frank Lampard committing his future to New York City FC.
The U.S. government recognizes Kosovo, as do most European states, but getting football's ruling bodies to play ball has proved harder.
updated 11:04 AM EDT, Wed June 4, 2014
National heroes don't always belong to one country. Ask France's World Cup hero Patrick Vieira, who is rediscovering his roots.
CNN's John Sinnott on the quiet Cambridge graduate behind Liverpool's resurgent campaign.
updated 11:19 AM EDT, Fri May 30, 2014
They are the dispossessed -- stateless, and unrecognized by football's ruling body. But these teams will still play at their own World Cup.
Louis van Gaal will be a perfect fit for Manchester United the club, business and brand, says CNN's Patrick Snell.
updated 3:24 PM EDT, Mon May 19, 2014
There's a new force in Spanish football -- and Atletico Madrid's ascendance is sharply contrasted by the fall from power of Barcelona.
updated 8:06 AM EDT, Tue May 13, 2014
Rubber bullets, drones and FBI-trained riot police. Welcome to Brazil's 2014 World Cup -- will protests overshadow football's showpiece event?
updated 9:18 AM EDT, Fri May 9, 2014
The former England international, who famously kicked a banana off the pitch 27 years ago, says education is the key to tackling racism.
updated 8:00 AM EDT, Wed May 7, 2014
Of course not. But former Fulham owner Mohamed Al Fayed seems to think the removal of Michael Jackson's statue was a very "bad" idea.
updated 12:03 PM EDT, Wed May 7, 2014
BARCELONA, SPAIN - APRIL 01: Neymar of Barcelona celebrates his goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final first leg match between FC Barcelona and Club Atletico de Madrid at Camp Nou on April 1, 2014 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
The Brazilian star's first season in Spain may have spluttered along, but the 22-year-old says he'll be firing on all cylinders at the World Cup.
updated 1:15 PM EDT, Wed April 30, 2014
Former Soviet footballer Sergei Baltacha traveled from the land of the hammer and sickle to join The Tractor Boys and in doing so broke new ground.
updated 5:31 AM EDT, Tue April 29, 2014
Brazil's Dani Alves arrived at Barcelona from Sevilla in 2008 and he has gone on to make over 180 appearances for the club.
Villarreal football supporter who threw a banana at Barcelona's Dani Alves during league match handed a life ban by the La Liga club.
ADVERTISEMENT