It’s a sad thing that racism is still a part of football at this time and age and new Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger was a victim of racial abuse from both fans and opponents during his time in the Serie A with Roma – and he has now called for justice.
Chelsea’s new £34million has told the football governing body in Italy to give bans to racists in Seria A.
“I just want justice.” he said. “I want FIFA or the FA in Italy just to suspend those people who do that.
“It is not all the people in Italy who are like that. If we always talk about racism in Italy, people think that all Italians are racist people and it is not like that.
“I just mean those specific people who do it. Those people need to be banned from the stadium or fined.”
Rudiger spent just two seasons in the Serie A but it was enough for him to be a victim of racial attacks, having moved from Stuttgart.
As a Roma player in Serie A, the Germany international experienced it firsthand at the hands of Lazio fans and even from opposition players.
Last December Lazio midfielder Senad Lulic was given a 20-day ban for the racist remarks he aimed at Rudiger following defeat in the derby weeks earlier.
Rudiger was racially abused again this year by Lazio fans during an Italian Cup game.
Although his team-mates have shown solidarity with him, the defender opened up that it wasn’t an easy experience to contain.
“You feel alone.” he said “People love to say ‘stay calm’ or ‘don’t do anything’. It is easy for you to say those things when you are not black and you never feel what it is like.
“You cannot even put yourself in my position of how that feels. In that moment, it is like this. You are alone.
“You have to be strong. But each human is different. Someone takes it and doesn’t react. Others react. I can understand both.”