Published: Thu, December 05, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Italian sports daily under fire for 'Black Friday' headline

Italian sports daily under fire for 'Black Friday' headline

The Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport has been heavily criticised for a front page with the headline "Black Friday" in regards to the former Manchester United teammates Romelu Lukaku and Chris Smalling facing each other on Friday.

"In the faces of those idiots who boo, tomorrow everyone must instead go "oooh" like children".

"White, black, yellow. Denying difference is the typical macroscopic stumbling block of anti-racism racism", it said in an editorial.

"We would argue this is the sort of thing that fuels racism - the way in which Corriere dello Sport has made a point of their race".

Lukaku and Smalling are the stand-out players heading into Friday's match having both impressed for their respective clubs since swapping Old Trafford for Italy this summer.

"You guys keep fuelling the negativity and the racism issue".

"Being an agent, we are trying to protect our clients from this huge problem, because it's not only a newspaper but it's a problem you can breathe in the stadium, in social media, on the street".

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The newspaper said its choice of words reflected "the pride of difference, the wonderful wealth of difference", adding: "If you don't get it, it is because you can't or you don't want to". If you don't understand it, it's because you can't or because you do it.

'In response to the "Black Friday" title published today by the newspaper, Roma and Milan have chose to deny the Corriere dello Sport access to training centers for the rest of the year and have established that their respective players will not carry out any activity media coverage with the newspaper during this period.

Roma's English-language Twitter account expressed its disgust at the headline, while Inter tweeted: "Football is passion, culture and brotherhood. We are and always will be opposed to any form of discrimination".

Serie A has been plagued by racist incidents this season, with Lukaku himself and Brescia forward Mario Balotelli among those to make allegations of being racially abused by supporters during games.

All 20 clubs in the Italian top flight recently pledged to try and do more to tackle the "serious problem" with racism.

Powar called for the players' union in Italy to do more.

AS Roma and Inter's cross-town rivals AC Milan have both announced that they will not work with Corriere dello Sport until January.

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