Fan who shouted racist abuse at AC Milan's Maignan faces charges

AC Milan's French goalkeeper Mike Maignan has called for unity in the 'battle against a societal issue bigger than football'

AC Milan's French goalkeeper Mike Maignan has called for  unity in the 'battle against a societal issue bigger than football' Creator: Isabella BONOTTO

A man suspected of shouting racist abuse at AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan before Sunday's match against Juventus in Turin has been identified and will face charges of inciting hatred, police said Thursday.  

The suspect belonged to a Juventus fan club in the Verona area. 

He was identified by Juventus and the police "through the video surveillance system of the stadium" and reported to the judicial authorities, according to an investigator of the police in Turin contacted by AFP. 

He is to be prosecuted for "incitement to racial hatred" and faces a fine and a stadium ban, according to this source. 

In a video that appeared on social media, a person could be heard hurling racist insults at Maignan, a French international who was born in French Guyana, as he warmed up just before the match.  

The supporters' club to which the suspect belonged announced on its website his immediate expulsion, "firmly dissociating itself from such behaviour and condemning it strongly". 

Maignan, who arrived in Milan this summer from Lille, called for a concerted response.

"We need to be more and all united in this battle against a societal issue bigger than football himself," he wrote in a social media post in French, Italian and English. "Do the people who take decisions know what it feels to hear insults that portray us as animals."

"I am not a 'victim' of racism. I am Mike, standing up, black and proud," he had said 

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