Photo: FIFA President Sepp Blatter "Sickened" by Racist Chants at Real Betis' Paulao
The president of FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, expressed disgust Tuesday over racist chants directed at a Brazilian player last weekend during a La Liga match in Spain.
“Sickened to learn of ‘fans’ racially abusing a Real Betis player,” Sepp Blatter said on Twitter. “I condemn their actions, which were seen on TV/online by millions.”
The incident occurred during a match in Seville between cross-town rivals Sevilla and Real Betis.
Betis’ Paulao was ejected in the 42nd minute after receiving a second yellow card. As he left the field, some Betis supporters directed monkey chants at the Afro-Brazilian defender.
“FIFA’s members approved a resolution at congress in May to tackle discrimination. It’s time for tougher sanctions,” Blatter said Tuesday.
Paulao called the fans’ behavior “very ugly.”
“When I left the pitch I was only upset about the sending off and I did not notice, although my friends told me about it later, he told Spanish media.
“It’s good that this gets a lot of publicity so that action can be taken. We are all the same. Skin color changes nothing,” the Brazilian said.