Four supporters who racially abused AC Milan’s Mike Maignan given stadium bans

By Sports Desk January 24, 2024

Four individuals who racially abused AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan during a Serie A match at the weekend have been given five-year stadium bans by Italian police.

AC Milan players briefly left the pitch during their match away to Udinese on January 20 after alerting referee Fabio Maresca to the abuse being directed at their goalkeeper.

On Wednesday, the office of Udine police commissioner Alfredo D’Agostino announced that four people had been identified using security cameras from the stadium.

“There are four people, three men and one woman, aged between 32 and 45, against whom the police commissioner of Udine has issued banning orders for the duration of five years,” a statement said.

A five-year ban is the maximum penalty that can be handed to first-time offenders for racist abuse at football matches in Italy.

Udinese announced on Monday that one fan had been banned for life over the incident, and the club had said that any other offenders who were identified would face the same penalty.

On Tuesday, the club were ordered to play one match behind closed doors by Serie A’s sports judge, Gerardo Mastrandrea.

That judgement said the one-match stadium closure was the minimum sanction which could have been imposed, and was chosen to reflect Udinese’s active stance and willingness right from the start to identify those responsible.

Speaking after the game, which restarted after a delay of around 10 minutes, Maignan told Milan TV: “I heard them making monkey noises.

“After it happened a second time, I went to the dugout to inform them of what had happened behind the goal.

“This shouldn’t exist in the world of football, but unfortunately for many years this is a recurrence. We all have to react, we must do something because you can’t play like this.”

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