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Cagliari escape punishment for alleged racist chants towards Romelu Lukaku

By Vincent Ashitey
Romelu Lukaku dispatching a penalty
Romelu Lukaku dispatching a penalty
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Cagliari have escaped punishment for their fans aiming monkey taunts at Romelu Lukaku - because the Italian FA decided the noises were not discriminatory.

Lukaku's first game for Inter Milan was marred by the former Manchester United striker be subjected to vile abuse as he prepared to take a penalty.

The 26-year-old scored from the spot and stood in defiance before the group of home supporters who had been targeting.

And now a report by a disciplinary official at the Italian FA has ruled no offence had been committed, so no punishment will be handed down.

They have, however, decided to fine Cagliari £4,428 after some of their fans threw half-full plastic bottles onto the pitch in the same game.

It is the latest race shame to hit Italian football since Lukaku made the move to the San Siro at the start of the season.

After Lukaku had spoken out about the treatment he had received, a section of Inter supporters amazingly defended what had happened and claimed there was nothing malicious to the abuse.

That stance was later rejected by a rival Inter Ultras group who insisted racist abuse was unacceptable in the game.

But this week and Italian TV pundit was sacked for claiming live on a show that opposition sides should give Lukaku "ten bananas" to distract him.

The ruling by the Italian FA is sure to go down badly with Lukaku, who issued a statement in the days after the incident demanding an end to the sickening abuse.

He wrote: "Many players in the last month have suffered from racial abuse. I did yesterday too.

"Football is a game to be enjoyed by everyone and we shouldn't accept any form of discrimination that will put our game in shame.

"I hope the football federations all over the world react strongly on all cases of discrimination!