'Racism is everyone's problem, not just Italy's' – Prandelli

The Azzurri boss has made it clear that racial absue must not be tolerated and criticised Zdenek Zeman for comments over a recent incident involving Mario Balotelli

Italy coach Cesare Prandelli has called on the footballing world to tackle the problem of racism after AC Milan’s Mario Balotelli was abused by Roma supporters during their goalless draw on May 12.

The Serie A match had to be paused by the referee at one point due to offensive chants directed at the former Manchester City striker, and Prandelli insists more must be done to combat the issue as it is prevalent beyond the borders of the bel paese.

“This is not just a problem of AC Milan and Italian football, it is everyone’s problem,” the 55-year-old told Tuttosport.

“With Balotelli we still face the problem of racism today. We will discuss it soon, even with the whole [Italy] team.”

Prandelli then criticised former Giallorossi boss Zdenek Zeman for refusing to acknoledge the incident as racism-related and claiming Balotelli provokes such abuse with his behaviour.

“Zeman said he [Balotelli] pays for his attitude? That’s a serious problem, it is like saying that women are subjected to violence because they take care of their looks,” Prandelli fumed.

“We must no longer tolerate anything, we must have determination to stay on the subject. It’ll be a long path, but we must insist on this road and think about our children.

“First of all we must have respect for the person, always, and be aware of what everyone has experienced on their own.”

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