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A soccer player in Portugal who tried to leave the pitch after being racially abused by fans had to be subbed off so his team didn't forfeit the match

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  • FC Porto’s Moussa Marega tried to walk off the pitch in protest at alleged racial abuse from Vitoria Guimaraes fans on Sunday, but had to be substituted so his side would avoid punishment.
  • The Malian striker was subjected to monkey chants throughout the match, according to Al Jazeera, and in the 72nd minute, he went to leave the pitch in protest.
  • Teammates tried to physically stop him leaving the pitch, but Marega insisted he wanted to come off.
  • He was ultimately substituted by manager Sergio Conceicao, as leaving the pitch without being subbed could have led to sanctions against Porto.
  • Marega leaving the pitch could have been a violation of Liga Portugal’s match laws, and could have resulted in Porto forfeiting the match. 
  • “Go f— yourself,” Marega said to his abusers on Instagram after. “YOU ARE A SHAME!!!!” — he added about the officials in the game.
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A soccer player in Portugal who tried to walk off the pitch after suffering alleged racial abuse had to be substituted by his manager to avoid a potential sanction from the the division’s governing body. 

Moussa Marega was subjected to monkey chants from a section of the home crowd throughout FC Porto’s 2-1 win over Vitoria Guimaraes on Sunday, according to Al Jazeera.

After scoring what proved to be the winning goal in the 60th minute, Marega celebrated by pointing to his skin and raising his middle finger at the Guimaraes fans.

The Malian striker had objects hurled at him from the crowd, and was subsequently booked by the referee for the gesture.

After the abuse continued, Marega headed for the tunnel in the 72nd minute, aiming “thumbs down” gestures at the crowd.

He was restrained by teammates who pleaded with him not to walk off, and tried to physically prevent him from leaving the field.

Rather than Marega simply being allowed to leave the field, his manager Sergio Conceicao was forced into substituting him. Had Conceicao not made the official change and allowed Marega to go through with his protest, Porto could have been subject to punishment by UEFA.

Marega leaving the field of his on accord could have been deemed a violation of Liga Portugal’s match laws, and may have resulted in him forfeiting the match for his side.

The organization however denounced those responsible in an official statement. 

“Liga Portugal does not agree and never will with acts of racism, xenophobia or intolerance that jeopardize the dignity of footballers or any human beings,” it said on its website.

“Liga Portugal will do everything to ensure that this episode and all other racist incidents do not go unpunished.

“We believe this is a fight where your team’s colors do not matter and everyone must come together to eradicate this scourge on the game.

After the game, Marega took to Instagram to also condemn those who reportedly abused him, as well as the match officials on the day. 

“I would just like to tell these idiots who come to the stadium to make racist screams, go f— yourself,” he said.

“And I also thank the referees for not defending me and for giving me a yellow card because I defend my skin color.
I hope I never meet you on a football field again! YOU ARE A SHAME!!!!”

Porto is currently second in the Portuguese top flight, one point behind leaders Benfica.

Read more:

Chris Smalling says football organizations are finally listening to players who have been racially abused, but Italy’s latest horror show suggests otherwise

15 racist incidents from across the world of soccer that made 2019 one of the sport’s most shameful years ever

A Bulgaria crowd appeared to make monkey chants and Nazi salutes at England’s black players, and the team’s captain begged the fans to stop

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