Czech player says racially abused by Russia fans
WROCLAW - The Associated Press
Czech player Theodor Gebre Selassie (left top) takes a header on the Russian goal during the Group A preliminary round match of the UEFA EURO 2012 between Russia and Czech Republic in Wroclaw, Poland, 08 June 2012. EPA photoCzech Republic defender Theodor Gebre Selassie says he was racially abused by Russian fans at his team's opening game of the European Championship.
The only black man on the Czech team says he "noticed that" but downplayed the seriousness of the abuse. He said the incident was nothing "extreme." Gebre Selassie said Sunday he is ready to put it behind him.
UEFA has pledged zero tolerance of discrimination during the three-week tournament in Poland and Ukraine.
On Saturday, Football Against Racism in Europe, an anti-racism network that operates with UEFA support, said it identified verbal insults targeted at Gebre Selassie, whose father is Ethiopian.