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Union leader 'proud' of Boateng

World Leagues

Zurich - Footballers' union leader Theo van Seggelen says he's proud of Kevin-Prince Boateng's protest against racist abuse by fans, but agrees with Sepp Blatter that players leaving the pitch is not the answer.

Fifpro general secretary Van Seggelen said Boateng chose “the right moment” to lead off his AC Milan team mates and stop a friendly last Friday.

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Ac Milan's Ghanaian defender Prince Kevin Boateng reacts during the friendly football match between Pro Patria and Ac Milan in Busto Arsizio on January 3, 2013. Boateng stormed off the pitch after racist chants from a group of fans on Thursday, forcing a friendly away game against fourth-tier club Pro Patria to be suspended. "Shame that these things still happen," the 25-year-old German-born Ghanaian player said on his Twitter account after the match was stopped in the 26th minute when he led his team off the pitch. Boateng picked up the ball, kicked it towards the stands and walked off the pitch in Pro Patria's home town of Busto Arsizio near Milan. AFP PHOTO / ALBERTO LINGRIA

The Dutch official acknowledged that “when it is the Champions League final, the circumstances are different”.

Van Seggelen said: “We have regulations for that. The referee is the only one who can stop the game.”

Van Seggelen backed Fifa president Blatter who praised Boateng on Monday as “courageous,” before adding in his world player of the year ceremony speech that players walking off “cannot be the solution in the long term”. - Sapa-AP

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