Samba hit by banana in racial attack

2012-03-19 11:28

Moscow – Anzhi Makhachkala’s Congolese defender Christopher Samba has claimed he was the victim of an apparent racial attack after a rival fan threw a banana at him after a Russian league match at the weekend.

Media reports said that Samba was on his way to the dressing room after the final whistle of yesterday’s game at Lokomotiv Moscow which his side lost 1-0 when a banana came flying from the VIP box, landing nearby.

The 27-year-old Congo international defender picked it up and threw it back. “I hope this incident will become an example of how not to behave for those children who saw it at the arena.”

Lokomotiv chiefs rejected accusations directed against the club’s fans.

“There were no incidents at the stadium on Sunday,” Lokomotiv president Olga Smorodskaya said. “I was watching our fans during the match with great attention. They conducted themselves exemplary during and after the match.”

Last year another Anzhi player, 38-year-old Brazilian veteran Roberto Carlos, was twice the victim of banana attacks at Saint Petersburg and Samara.

The incidents led to Russia’s Premier League issuing an appeal to fans to stop tarnishing the reputation of Russian football.

Premier league spokesperson Sergei Alekseyev said the league was ready to do everything to “change the situation” but that legal action was not always possible.

“The stadium in itself is a democratic environment,” he said. “The police can seize flares, but how can they seize fruit?” he asked.

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