Lazio banned and fined for fans’ racist chant

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Lazio will be serving a two-match partial stadium ban as fans of the Italian club shouted racist chants at a Napoli player during the clubs’ encounter at the Stadio Olimpico.

The match ban will close the club’s North End, Tevere North End and Monte Mario North End for two matches, which include a one-match sanction suspended for a year after a similar incident with Genoa.

A statement published on legaseriea.it added that the club will also be fined for a sum of 50,000 Euros.

The match’s officials reported that Senegaleses defender Kalibou Koulibaly was the target of the abuse. He later thanked Tuscan referee Irrati for his support and courage for taking action against the distraction.

Play was suspended for three minutes in the second half as fans screamed racist chants, but Napoli went on to defeat Lazio by 2-0.

This was not the first time that Lazio had face such charges; other clubs such as Juventus and Genoa had players on the receiving end of such abuses.

After the match, Lazio manager Stefano Pioli condemned the abuse, saying “Abusive chants should not happen. People need to show respect and be polite.”

But he had doubts about the steps taken by the match officials.

“I am not sure I would have stopped play – I don’t think that’s helpful.”

“The chanting is unjustified but by stopping play you give a sense of importance to a tiny minority of troublemakers. It certainly wasn’t from the whole stadium.”

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