Serie A

Danilo sentenced to jail for racism

Danilo Larangeira
Brazilian defender Danilo joined Udinese in the summer of 2011 from Palmeiras.
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Udinese defender Danilo has been sentenced to a year in prison by a court in Brazil for racist abuse after spitting in the face of Atletico Paranese's Manoel and calling him a "monkey" while playing for Palmeiras in the Copa do Brazil in 2010.

Danilo received a year's custodial sentence by the 18th Criminal Court of the State of Sao Paolo, but is expected to have the punishment reduced after appeal to a fine of around 127,000 euros.

The 28-year-old joined Udinese from Palmeiras in the summer of 2011 and has since made 25 appearances for the Serie A outfit.

Racial abuse has dominated headlines in world soccer as of late. FIFA President Sepp Blatter praised Kevin-Prince Boateng for making a "strong and courageous'' stand by leading his AC Milan teammates off the pitch to protest racial abuse by fans in Italy last week.

But Blatter told the FIFA Ballon d'Or ceremony on Monday that such protests are not the solution to stop discrimination inside stadiums.

"That is praiseworthy,'' Blatter said of the Ghana midfielder's action during the first half of a friendly against a fourth-tier Italian club. "But it cannot be the solution in the long term.

"We have to find other sustainable solutions to tackle the problem of racism and discrimination at its roots,'' Blatter said. "Otherwise, such stands will be made in isolation and lost in the heat of general polemic.''

Recently, FIFA's disciplinary committee on Tuesday ordered Bulgaria to play in an empty stadium on March 22 when it hosts Malta for a World Cup qualifier and fined the Balkan country 35,000 Swiss francs ($38,000) for racist abuse by its fans during a World Cup qualifier.

The Associated Press was used in this report.



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