Romelu Lukaku. Alamy Stock Photo
Serie A

Juventus given partial stadium closure after fans racially abused Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku has spoken out against racism previously and called on Serie A to “take actions for real this time” following this latest incident.

JUVENTUS HAVE BEEN sanctioned with a one-match partial stadium closure after supporters racially abused Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku during the first leg of the Coppa Italia semi-final.

The Belgium forward was subjected to abuse after being shown a second yellow card for his celebrations in front of the home fans when he converted a stoppage-time penalty to earn Inter a 1-1 draw on Tuesday.

A chaotic end ensued at the Allianz Stadium as scuffles broke out between both sets of players, resulting in Inter captain Samir Handanovic and Juve midfielder Juan Cuadrado being sent off after the final whistle.

Lukaku has spoken out against racism on numerous occasions in the past and called on Serie A to “take actions for real this time” following the latest incident.

On Thursday, Serie A ruled the Tribuna Sud section of Juventus’ Allianz Stadium, which has a capacity of around 5,000, must be closed for one match, which will be against league leaders Napoli on 23 April.

“The supporters of Juventus occupying the first tier of the sector known as the ‘tribuna sud’, during the 35th and 49th minutes of the second half shouted vulgar and insulting choruses and shouts of racial discrimination against the player of Internazionale Romelu Lukaku Bolingoli,” a statement from Serie A read.

“Having considered that, due to the seriousness, dimension and real perception of the incident as well as the repetitiveness of the same aforementioned behaviours, the sports judge resolves to sanction Juventus with the obligation to play a match in the sector called “tribuna sud”, first tier, with no spectators.”

As part of the disciplinary ruling from the judge, Lukaku was suspended for the second leg of the cup tie, while Handanovic must also serve a one-game ban and Cuadrado is set for a three-match suspension.

Following Tuesday’s game, Juventus said the club were “collaborating with the police to identify those responsible for the racist gestures and chants which took place.”

Inter also reiterated their stance against racism and expressed their support for Lukaku.

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