Carlisle backs players willing to walk off
Professional Footballers’ Association chairman Clarke Carlisle has told Inside Sport that he will support any player in English football who walks off the pitch after being subjected to racist abuse – as former Spurs and Portsmouth midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng did when playing in a friendly for Milan in Italy last week.
“I will always back a player who walks off because he doesn’t feel the situation is being dealt with by the referees, by warnings over the Tannoy or by offenders being thrown out,” said Carlisle.
Boateng, a Ghana international, walked off the pitch during Milan’s friendly at Italian fourth division club Pro Patria. The club, whose name means ‘For The Fatherland’, are based in Busto Arsizio, a city just north of Milan renowned for its support of right-wing political parties.
Boateng, who joined Milan from Portsmouth in 2010, was targeted for racist abuse by a section of the crowd before making his protest halfway through the first half. In what some observers have called a ‘tipping point’ for anti-racism action, all the players from both sides as well as the match officials joined Boateng and the vast majority of the crowd applauded.
Carlisle said: “Boateng’s action is something I applaud, and I think it’s a fantastic statement that both teams went off. It’s even better that it happened in a country where we’ve questioned how seriously people want to tackle the backward-thinking behaviour that is racism.”
From Daily Mail