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London – Tottenham centre-back William Gallas has called on Football's highest authorities Uefa and Fifa to take a tougher stance against racism.
The Frenchman's call to arms comes after Togo striker and teammate Emmanuel Adebayor was allegedly subjected to monkey chants during Tottenham's Europa League clash at Inter Milan on Thursday.
“It's not the first time we've had these incidents,” said the 35-year-old.
“Uefa and Fifa have to act because they have to understand what we can feel when we are on the pitch.
“To hear that is not good. Sometimes the best thing is to punish the people who do this.”
And Gallas, who is himself black, said he understands those players who take a stand, such as AC Milan midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng, who walked off during his team's friendly against Pro Patria after he was racially abused.
“Some players come off the pitch to show they are disappointed, I understand it and that shows we are not happy about this,” said Gallas.
Adebayor did have the last laugh, though, as it was his goal in extra-time that saw Spurs through to the Europa League quarter-finals, where they will face Basel, despite a 4-1 reverse at the San Siro.
Inter are no strangers to unsavoury chanting.
Three weeks ago, they were fined and warned about their supporters' future conduct after racist chanting was heard during the derby with city rivals AC Milan.
Inter were fined 50,000 euros ($66,000) for its fans' repeated “expressions of racial discrimination to a player of the opposing team” and the unfurling of insulting banners.
Some hardcore Inter fans were seen waving inflatable bananas during that game. – Sapa-AFP