HAD ENOUGH: Boateng walks off the pitch
RACIST CHANTING from a section of fan belonging to Italian fourth-tier club Pro Patria caused the AC Milan to walk off the pitch in a show of solidarity to Kevin Prince-Boateng and others, who felt targeted by the home supporters’ abuse.
Consequently, the match officials were forced to call off the friendly match after 26 minutes. Before leaving the field of play, Boateng, a Ghanaian international, reacted angrily to those fans he perceived were aiming abuse at him – the 25-year-old picked up the ball and booted it into the crowd, a similar reaction to that of Danny Rose during the England Under-21 match against Serbia last October. Rose was given a red card for this action.
However, Boateng did not wait around; he ripped off his jersey and exited the pitch at the opposite end. The former Tottenham midfielder was seen to applaud other sections of the ground, which seemed to then direct their collective ire toward the area of fans that had been the source of the racial chants.
Video footage from inside Pro Patria's ground of the abandoned match
On his way off in protest, Boateng was joined by the rest of his team-mates, led by Milan’s captain Massimo Ambrosini. Allegedly, M’Baye Niang, Urby Emanuelson and Sulley Muntari were also targeted for abuse.
“I'm disappointed and saddened”, Milan coach, Massimiliano Allegri, told Gazzetta dello Sport, “but I think it was the right decision not to return to the field out of respect for our players and all other black players.
“We promise to return, and we are sorry for the club and players of Pro Patria, but we could not make any other decision. I'm sorry for the families and children who had come here to enjoy a beautiful day. I hope this can be an important signal.
“We were annoyed from the beginning. We wanted to give a strong signal … we could not continue the game in an atmosphere like this”, added the Italian manager.
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