Italian football has been marred with racism issues for much of the start of this new football campaign, overshadowing what has been an exciting start to the new Serie A season.
The ongoing, reprehensible environment towards black players in Italy has shown little sign of improving, with fans groups from clubs issuing condemnable statements and a continued inaction from Italian football governing bodies.
Now even the media has found itself involved in the unwanted and unacceptable controversy after Italian football pundit Luciano Passirani was sacked for on-air racist remarks about Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku.
The 80-year-old football pundit was attempting to compliment Lukaku’s ability as a striker, yet in a moment of baffling misjudgement, described the only way to stop the Belgian international to be giving him ‘10 bananas to eat’
Football journalist Passirani had been a guest on the Qui Studio a Voi Stadio show when he made the racist remark, with the director of the Telelombardia show immediately issuing a response saying Passirani would never appear on the programme again.
Earlier this season, Lukaku was subject to racist abuse from Cagliari supporters after scoring a winning goal for Inter Milan. After taking to social media to condemn the racial chanting and goading from opposition supporters, further controversy was sparked when a supporters group from his own club, Inter, issued a statement stating that the racist abuse from Cagliari fans was supposedly to be taken as a mark of respect.