What's Buzzing:

Brazilian player racially abused after match

The Associated Press

SAO PAULO (AP) -- Fans yelled racist insults at a Brazilian soccer player being interviewed by reporters after a match, the latest case of racism to hit the country that will host the World Cup in a few months.

Santos midfielder Arouca, who played for Brazil's national team last year, was on the field talking to reporters after his team's 5-2 win in the Sao Paulo state championship on Thursday when some fans in the stands called him ''monkey.''

The insults came a day after a referee said he was targeted by racist fans before and after a match, and less than a month after another Brazilian player was insulted in a Copa Libertadores game in Peru.

''It's better to block that out, better not to listen to these people, if you can actually call them people,'' said the 27-year-old Arouca, who scored one of Santos' goals in the interior city of Mogi Mirim. ''It's hard to talk about what is happening these days. It's tough, but we know it happens, not only in soccer. I just hope someone can do something serious about it because it's lamentable.''

While still talking to reporters, Arouca kept looking at the stands to try to find the fans who yelled at him. Reporters later said the insults came from a group of three or four Mogi Mirim fans.

Brazil has been making headlines for the wrong reasons as it tries to get ready for the World Cup. In addition to problems finishing stadiums and infrastructure work, the country has also been dealing with several cases of fan violence and court disputes that threaten to delay this year's Brazilian league because of a controversial sports tribunal decision that altered the results of last year's tournament.

''We can't let something like this happen, especially with the World Cup just around the corner,'' Santos coach Oswaldo de Oliveira said after the insults to Arouca. ''These people need to be punished.''

Police officials said they would try to find the fans responsible.

On Wednesday, referee Marcio Chagas da Silva said some fans called him ''monkey'' and told him to ''return to the jungle'' before a match in the Rio Grande do Sul state championship. He said his car was vandalized and bananas were left on top of it.

''Unfortunately, this type of attitude is still happening in this country,'' Silva said.

Last month, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff gave her support to a black Brazilian player who was taunted with monkey chants every time he touched the ball during a Copa Libertadores match in Peru. On her Twitter feed, Rousseff called the incident involving Cruzeiro player Tinga ''sad,'' adding that ''sports can never serve as a stage for prejudice.''

Racist behavior is a longstanding problem at matches in Europe. FIFA has sponsored anti-racism campaigns that have had modest levels of success, and it has promised to raise more awareness during this year's World Cup.


Follow Tales Azzoni at https://twitter.com/tazzoni

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Hockey
Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.
    • UEFA broke no rules in granting $4.4 million Slovenian loan

      After an internal investigation, UEFA has found that former general secretary Gianni Infantino and current president Aleksander Ceferin did not break any rules when the governing body of European soccer sent a multimillion dollar loan to the … More »

      AP - Sports - 17 minutes ago
    • Valencia fined for bottles thrown at Barcelona players

      Valencia fined for bottles thrown at Barcelona players

      The Spanish soccer federation has fined Valencia 1,500 euros ($1,600) for water bottles thrown at Barcelona players celebrating a goal in a Spanish league game last weekend. The federation also warned Valencia that it may close its Mestalla Stadium … More »

      AP - Sports - 19 minutes ago
    • Chelsea tell West Ham to ensure fans' safety at Cup game

      Chelsea tell West Ham to ensure fans' safety at Cup game

      (Reuters) - Chelsea have called on West Ham United "to deliver a safe event" ahead of Wednesday's League Cup clash at London Stadium, a fixture with a history of crowd trouble that is viewed as a major test of security at the Hammers' new ground. … More »

      Reuters - 31 minutes ago
    • Liverpool spoilt for choice up front

      Liverpool spoilt for choice up front

      Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge took the plaudits with both goals as they reached the League Cup quarter-finals but the 2-1 home win over Tottenham Hotspur was another step forward for two other strikers also battling to become permanent starters. … More »

      Reuters - 1 hour 30 minutes ago
    • Need time to acclimatise to English football, says Guardiola

      Need time to acclimatise to English football, says Guardiola

      (Reuters) - Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said he is still learning to adapt to the demands of English football as he seeks to end his club's five-game winless run against rivals Manchester United in the League Cup on Wednesday. City … More »

      Reuters - 3 hours ago