Police: No reports of racism against Neymar
London police received no official reports of racist taunts at Sunday’s exhibition between Brazil and Scotland despite complaints by Neymar that he had been targeted by fans.
Neymar scored both goals in Brazil’s 2-0 win and said jeers he received from Scottish fans had been racially motivated.
A Scotland fan group has said any jeers were in response to what fans saw as the Santos striker faking injury, and the Scottish Football Association joined in refuting suggestions of racism.
The officer in charge of police at the Emirates Stadium, where the match was played, backed the Scotland fans.
”The Scottish fans’ behavior was first class,” match commander Mark Sheeran said Monday. ”There were no issues at all inside the stadium.”
Brazilian television channel Sportv reported that a banana was thrown at Neymar, but the SFA said an object was apparently thrown from the North Stand of the Emirates Stadium crowd holding Brazil fans.
The 11,500 members of the Scotland Supporters Club at the match were located in the South Stand.
”The Scottish FA has contacted the Brazilian football federation and the match organizers, Kentaro, to inform them of our information and of our supporters’ unhappiness at the unfounded accusations,” the SFA said in a statement.
Supporters did jeer Neymar for much of the match. They thought he had faked injury following an apparently innocuous first-half clash with Scotland midfielder Scott Brown.
Neymar’s on-field treatment held up play and he was then slow in making his way to the sideline as the referee tried to restart play.
”The reason Neymar was booed was because we believed he was feigning injury during the course of the game,” said Hamish Husband, spokesman for Scotland fan group Association of Tartan Army Clubs. ”Racism has no place within the Tartan Army and if it did exist it would be stamped out immediately as we are self policing.”