Mario Balotelli: Italian Reports Suggest Balotelli Racially Abused

Mario Balotelli: Italian Reports Suggest Balotelli Racially Abused

Italian media reports suggest AC Milan's Mario Balotelli was the target of racial abuse from fans of ex-club Inter Milan in Sunday's derby. Balotelli, 22, played for Inter before signing for Manchester City and then moving to AC Milan in January 2013.

Newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport was among those to report inflatable bananas were waved by Inter fans in Sunday's 1-1 draw at the San Siro. Balotelli also put his finger to his lips in an apparently defiant gesture.

The Press Association is reporting that the Serie A disciplinary council will rule on the events of the match at the San Siro in a meeting to be held in Milan on Tuesday.

But Italian football journalist Tancredi Palmeri, in an interview with BBC World Service, questioned whether the waving of the items were directed at Balotelli.

"I've pretty much always seen these inflatable bananas in the stands of the fans," he said, "So we could question what could be the meaning. It could be that it so sometimes just a joking towards the opposite fans.

"I'm not ruling anything out." Earlier this month, Inter were fined 15,000 euros (£12,900) after racist chants from some of their supporters about Balotelli at a match against Chievo. AC Milan vice-president Paolo Berlusconi, brother of the San Siro's club president Silvio, was also recently accused of using racist language to describe Balotelli.

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