"I want to forget about it all as quickly as possible," Everton said on Sunday

By Caitlin Keating
February 21, 2017 12:07 PM
Advertisement
Credit: STR/AFP/Getty

Soccer player Everton Luiz, a Partizan Belgrade midfielder, was left in tears after he was subjected to “monkey chants” and other abuse on Sunday during his team’s victory over Rad in the Serbian league, according to the Associated Press.

A racist banner was also in the stands where the Rads were standing and was removed after intervention from the referee.

Luiz, a Brazilian player who joined the team last year, made a crude gesture at the opposing fans, prompting some to confront him, the BBC reports. Staff from both sides were able to break up a brawl that broke out.

“We strongly condemn the perpetrators of this insane act,” the Partizan team said in a statement according to the news outlet.

In a statement to Reuters, Luiz said that he and his family feel at home in Serbia which is why he couldn’t stop his tears after the game.

“I took 90 minutes of racist abuse and other insults from the terraces and thereafter I found myself in a cauldron of emotionless individuals who charged at me when they should have protected me,” he said. “I want to forget this, refocus on football and urge everyone to say ‘No’ to racism.”

The Serbian Football Association also made a statement on Monday, the outlet reports.

“Due to the misbehaviour of their fans who racially insulted a player, Rad’s stadium has been suspended until the Serbian Football Association (FSS) passes a verdict,” the league’s commissioner Vladimir Bulatovic said. “The suspension means no first division games will be played at the venue until a final decision is made and disciplinary proceedings have been opened against all parties involved in the incident.”