'It really hurts people and it should never happen' – Jorginho calls for 'broader look' at racism

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Serie A has moved quickly to punish Verona for incidents at the weekend, but Jorginho believes the league should go further to tackle the problem

Jorginho wants Serie A to take a “broader look” at the issue of racism beyond just penalising Hellas Verona following the abuse Mario Balotelli suffered at the weekend.

Brescia striker Balotelli kicked a ball into the stands and threatened to walk off the pitch having heard monkey chants during the match at Stadio Marcantonio Bentegodi on Sunday.

Verona’s coach Ivan Juric insisted there was no racist chanting, but Serie A punished the club by giving them a one-match partial stadium ban.

Verona’s also responded by banning Luca Castellini, the head of the club’s ultras group, from entering the stadium for more than 10 years after he used a series of racial slurs against Balotelli.

It was the latest of a number of racist incidents that has dogged Serie A matches this season.

Inter striker Romelu Lukaku was subjected to offensive chants as he stepped up to take a penalty against Cagliari in September. Last month, Napoli’s match against Roma was suspended when defender Kalidou Koulibaly was the subject of racist abuse.

As a result Jorginho, who spent his entire playing career in Serie A before joining Chelsea last summer, has called on the division to take a wider look at the problem.

“I am really sorry, because these things shouldn’t happen – neither in football nor in the world,” the Italy midfielder said.

“Unfortunately, they happen and I am really sorry. I’d like to send my affection to Mario, who doesn’t deserve this.

“And if I may, I’d like to ask not to do things like this, because it really hurts these people and it should never happen.

“Unfortunately, it happened, but I don’t think this happened only in Verona. It’s happening everywhere.

“Therefore, I think we shouldn’t penalise or point the finger only on Verona, we should take a broader look, because it didn’t happen only in Verona.

“Yes, they made a mistake and it is true that it’s not the first time, but how many times [has] it happened in other cities as well? It shouldn’t happen, I repeat, and I am really sorry, but we have to take a broader look to all the cities where it happened and not only to Verona.”


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