(Milan) Lazio Rome will play their next home match in front of several closed stands at the Stadio Olimpico, as punishment following monkey cries aimed at Roma’s Belgian center forward Romelu Lukaku during the Cup derby from Italy last Wednesday.
In a press release published on Friday, Serie A announced that three sections of the stadium stands, from which racist cries towards Lukaku emanated when he had the ball, would be closed to spectators during Lazio’s next match , on January 28 in the league against Naples, the defending champion.
The Roman club was sanctioned for “songs imitating the cry of the monkey, rude, insulting and racist” according to the terms of the press release, which specifies that these chants were distinctly perceived by four observers from the Italian Football Federation present in the stadium and that they were sung by “90% of the 16,000 supporters filling these stands”.
This sanction is the last in a long series for Lazio, some of whose supporters are openly far-right.
This fringe had already been guilty last April of racist and anti-Semitic chants during another derby against Roma, and last January had pushed Samuel Umtiti to the limit, to the point of making the French international cry during a match at Lecce, his club at the time.
As for Lukaku, he has already been the victim of such acts on several occasions since he played in Italy, from Juventus supporters last season and Cagliari in 2019, when he wore the jersey of Inter Milan.