Inter fined for Balotelli racist abuse

Milan striker fined for reaction to taunts from ex-club's fans

Inter fined for Balotelli racist abuse

Milan, February 26 - Inter Milan were fined 50,000 euros Tuesday for fans' racist abuse against AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli in Sunday's 1-1 derby draw. Balotelli was fined 10,000 euros for insulting the crowd at the end of the game. On Sunday night Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri praised the restraint of Balotelli, 22, who once said he would walk of the pitch if racially abused. "Balotelli did well not to react to provocation," Allegri said. Inter fans shouted insults and sang racist chants at Balotelli, waving offensive banners and inflatable bananas. The former Inter and Manchester City forward has repeatedly been subjected to racist taunts playing in and outside Italy. At Euro 2012 Croatia and eventual champions Spain were fined for abusing Balotelli. The Croatians also reportedly threw a banana at him, though this was not proven. In the run-up to the tournament the volatile forward said he would kill anyone who threw a banana at him in the street. He also said he would walk off the field if he heard any racist chants against him, prompting coach Cesare Prandelli to say he would pull the then Manchester City man off himself. Balotelli was also targeted by the Neo-Nazi Web site Stormfront after it emerged during the Azzurri's pre-tournament visit to Auschwitz that his adoptive mother has Jewish roots. Club owner and ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi last month praised Ghanaian midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng for leading a walk-off after he was racially abused during a friendly against third-tier Pro Patria. Vice-President Paolo Berlusconi, Silvio's younger brother, was recently filmed at a political meeting describing Balotelli as "il negretto della famiglia" or "the family's little nigger". Balotelli did not publicly react to the comment.

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