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Football Reporting


Alexandre Lacazette’s superb, defiant statement in face of Slavia Prague players

Alexandre Lacazette took a knee directly in front of the watching Slavia Prague players as he made a stand against racism before Arsenal’s Europa League quarter-final clash.

The Frenchman, who was the Gunners captain on the night in Prague, ensured that his gesture could be seen by the entire Slavia side before kick-off, with the rest of his Arsenal teammates taking a knee behind him.

The match is the first to take place after Slavia’s Ondrej Kudela was banned for 10 matches by UEFA after being found guilty of racially abusing Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara in a Europa League clash last month, although Kamara was also banned for three matches for “assaulting another player”.

UEFA’s statement said that they decided “to suspend SK Slavia Praha player, Ondrej Kudela, for the next 10 UEFA club and representative team competition matches for which he would otherwise be eligible to play, for racist behaviour.”

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Lacazette could be seen staring down the Slavia players

Kamara said that Kudela called him “a f****** monkey” as they rowed during the last-16 match at Ibrox, which Slavia won to progress into their last eight meeting with Arsenal.

After the match Kamara told ITV “[Kudela] came over and said ‘you’re a monkey, you’re a f****** monkey and you know you are’. From there I reacted and said ‘he’s racist, he’s racist’.

“From there I had a lot of emotions going through my mind; angry, upset, I felt humiliated. All my family, friends, fans, whoever is watching, I felt like a little boy.

“I didn’t know how to feel to be honest, I was at a point where I was so angry I had tears in my eyes. I haven’t felt like that in God knows how long. It was a really weird feeling.

“For that to happen, from a so-called fellow professional, it’s crazy. It’s something you don’t expect in the game. Words can’t explain how I felt. Hopefully, I never have to feel that again. It was crazy really.”

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