Rome

Soccer: Roma punished with partial ground closure for racism

Fans punished for chants against Balotelli

Soccer: Roma punished with partial ground closure for racism

Rome, May 20 - AS Roma will have to play a future home match with part of the Stadio Olimpico closed to the public as punishment for racist chants by their fans targeting Mario Balotelli in Sunday's 2-1 win over Napoli, the last match of the Serie A season. Serie A's sporting judge said the Olimpico's 'Curva Sud' end stand, where Roma's hardcore ultra fans watch home matches, will be shut because of "expressions of racial discrimination" directed at the Italy and AC Milan forward. The punishment is severe as Roma fans were guilty of a number of previous incidents of racist abuse, including the chants against Balotelli and other black Milan players that caused their side's 0-0 draw at the San Siro stadium to be briefly suspended earlier this month. Roma were also fined 50,000 euros, as were Inter Milan for racist chants by their fans in Sunday's 5-2 defeat to Udinese.

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