Italian Olympics chief claims diving 'more wrong' than racism

By Sports Desk September 25, 2019

The head of the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI) has claimed diving is "more wrong" than racism.

Serie A has come in for widespread criticism after a series of reported incidents of racism at stadiums this season.

Monkey chants could be heard as Inter striker Romelu Lukaku scored a penalty in a 2-1 win at Cagliari, while Hellas Verona denied opposition midfielder Franck Kessie was racially abused by their fans during a 1-0 defeat to AC Milan.

Atalanta's game against Fiorentina was stopped for three minutes after Viola defender Dalbert, on loan from Inter, reported racist abuse from the crowd to the referee.

When asked about the incidents, CONI president Giovanni Malago acknowledged the issue but suggested diving is a bigger problem.

"The fans who jeer black players are wrong," he told Radio24.

"However, it's even more wrong when someone who earns €3million dives in the box and is then also happy to take the penalty."

Related items

  • Has the Nations League been a big deal for small Caribbean teams? Has the Nations League been a big deal for small Caribbean teams?
  • Martinez: Belgium deserve to win Euro 2020... but it's not that simple Martinez: Belgium deserve to win Euro 2020... but it's not that simple

    Roberto Martinez believes Belgium deserve to win Euro 2020 but acknowledges that will count for little if they do not perform at the finals.

    Belgium completed their qualification campaign on Tuesday, thrashing Cyprus 6-1 to end with 10 wins from 10 in Group I, scoring 40 goals in the process.

    Martinez has already seen enough to suggest Belgium are worthy of a maiden major international title, yet he knows there is plenty of work to do.

    "Whether we can win the European Championship, that is something that we have in our hands," head coach Martinez said. "We need to get even better and then we see if we can play another great tournament.

    "We have set the standard at the World Cup [finishing third] and we are continuing to develop into a team with a great deal of togetherness. And the fans are also important.

    "We now have seven months to become as good as possible. This team deserves to win the European Championship but, in football, it's not that simple."

    Reflecting on qualifying, he added: "I think everyone just worked really well this year. The players know what to do and they do it with an incredible focus.

    "Scoring six times and then playing again in this way is very good."

    Kevin De Bruyne, who scored twice in a playmaking masterclass against Cyprus, added: "It's always beautiful. Nobody has given it to us.

    "Once you start the qualification, you have to go match by match and we did. It's very nice to finally get there [with 10 wins]."

  • Tite rejects criticism of Rodrygo's lack of playing time with Brazil Tite rejects criticism of Rodrygo's lack of playing time with Brazil

    Tite rejected criticism of his decision to play Rodrygo Goes for just two minutes in Brazil's 3-0 win over South Korea on Tuesday.

    The Brazil coach said on Monday he would be patient with the teenage forward, who has made an impressive start to life at Real Madrid.

    Rodrygo has scored twice in four LaLiga appearances for Madrid and notched a hat-trick in their 6-0 Champions League demolition of Galatasaray this month.

    The 18-year-old got 19 minutes on his debut in the 1-0 loss to Argentina on Friday and received even less playing time in Abu Dhabi.

    "It's one thing to throw Rodrygo into a system that's already structured, like Real's. It's another thing to put him in a team that is being reassembled, even if he was doing the same job in the same position," said Tite.

    "It was so hard to organise for the team for today and they responded well. They were close to scoring a fourth and a fifth.

    "It was a chance for Fabinho, Renan Lodi and Militao. They earned the chance and asserted themselves. Could it have been Rodrygo? Yes, but I preserved the continuity and the good moment of the team in the game."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.