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Match stopped to warn racists

February 22, 2005 18:00 IST
Referee Alfonso Perez Burrull became the first match official in Spain to halt a game because of racist abuse when he asked spectators to refrain from monkey chanting at a league match in Malaga.

Perez Burrull told club officials to make an announcement on the public address system to ask fans to stop their abuse of Espanyol's Cameroon keeper Carlos Kameni.

"The first time the Espanyol goalkeeper intervened you could hear monkey noises coming from behind the goal so I asked for the game to be stopped to ask the Malaga delegate to make an announcement on the loudspeakers," Burrull said in his match report published on Tuesday.

"I asked them to repeat the announcement at halftime in order to remind spectators

to refrain from racist behaviour."

Perez Burrull has been one of the most active referees in reporting racist behaviour by fans and noted similar incidents in the Madrid derby between Atletico and Real and the league match between Albacete and Barcelona.

The Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) usually only takes action when the incidents are mentioned in the match report, something that few referees do.

Spain's sports minister Jaime Lissavetsky is scheduled to meet with the presidents of the RFEF, the Professional Football League (LFP) and the Players' Association (AFE) on Tuesday to discuss the introduction of tougher measures to combat the problem of racism at football grounds.

Source: source
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