Moussa Marega was the latest black player to be at the receiving end of the growing racism in Europe, especially in football, as the Malian international walked off the pitch after he was alleged to have been subjected to racist abuse by some fans.
Moussa Marega plays for Porto, started to walk towards the dugouts in the 69th minute, nine minutes after scoring what would prove the winner in Porto’s 2-1 victory. He pointed his thumbs down and also raised his middle fingers to the crowd.
Team-mates and opposition players tried to persuade him to stay on, but he was eventually substituted.
This will not be the first time that players of African decent will be subjected to racial abuse, as both UEFA and FIFA are struggling to come up with a more appropriate penalties to clubs and fans who have been found wanting.
Only last year, cases were reported in Italy, England, Portugal, and some other European countries both at the club level and country in 2019, with little or no action from UEFA and FIFA. This latest incident is highly likely to be treated same way. The measures put in place by UEFA and FIFA rather than stop the racism, is somehow helping to fuel the issue in world football.Marega taking to his Instagram page on Sunday, posted this message, where he said the home supporters “who come to the stadium to make racist screams” were “idiots”.
” I would just like to tell these idiots who come to the stadium to make racist screams…fvck you…and I also thank the Referees for not defending me and for giving me a yellow card because I defended my skin colour.
Hope I never find you on a football field again! You are a shame!!!” he said.
Porto boss Sergio Conceicao said: “We are a family regardless of nationality, skin colour, hair colour. We are human, we deserve respect. What happened here is unfortunate.
“We are completely indignant about what happened. I know the passion that exists for Vitoria and I think most of the fans do not see themselves in the same attitude of some people who have insulted Moussa since the warm-up.
“I prefer not to speak about a situation without being aware of all the facts. But if the player was provoked, then he should not have been,” he said.
Porto’s match report on their website described it as “a sad situation that should make the Guimaraes club and Portuguese football blush with shame”.
Marega spent a season on loan at Vitoria in the 2016-17 campaign, scoring 15 goals in 25 games.
The Liga Portugal – the governing body of Portugal’s top-flight – condemned the behaviour of supporters saying it “does not agree with acts of racism, xenophobia, intolerance”.
In a statement, it said: “The values of football are not compatible with what happened at the stadium, in which an athlete no longer endured the insults he was being targeted and chose to abandon the game.
“These acts shame football and human dignity.
“The greatness of the institution of Vitoria should not be confused with the attitudes of some fans who have no place in football and sport.
“Liga Portugal will do everything so that this, and all episodes of racism, do not go unpunished, believing that this is a fight without colours and where everyone is decisive to eradicate this scourge.”
After the game, Vitoria coach Ivo Vieira said he did not want to speak about the incident “without being aware of all the facts”, but added: “If the player was provoked, then he should not have been.”
Vitoria said in a statement: “We will investigate what happened during the game played at Estadio D Afonso Henriques, acting firmly and thoroughly in full co-operation with the competent authorities.”