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SBD Global/January 7, 2013/International Football
Blatter Calls For Harsher Punishments By Governing Bodies To Racist Fans
Published January 7, 2013
RESPONSES TO THE RACISM: In London, Neil Rowlands reported the Italian Football Federation has responded to the incident "by announcing it will conduct an investigation." FA General Secretary Alex Horne believes that players "do have the right to walk off, but only if previous attempts to draw the abuse to the referee have been ignored." Horne: "If the players feel the referee isn't dealing with it, then I can understand why they walk off the pitch. Why should you have to tolerate that in this day and age?" (DAILY MIRROR, 1/6). Worldwide players' union FIFPro spokesperson Tony Higgins said, "The players of Milan sent a clear message: if racism does not stop, then football will. One solution would be to give referees more power to suspend or abandon games if they consider the racist abuse to be excessive" (RIA NOVOSTI, 1/4). The BBC reported AC Milan's players carried anti-racism messages on their shirts prior to Sunday's match against Siena (BBC, 1/6).