• Champions League

UEFA to investigate Toure racist abuse at Moscow

ESPN staff
October 25, 2013
Pellegrini backs Toure

UEFA president Michel Platini has sanctioned an "internal investigation" into why the referee of Manchester City's game at CSKA Moscow did not follow protocol following claims of racist abuse.

City midfielder Yaya Toure urged UEFA to act after he told referee Ovidiu Hategan he believed he was being racially abused by CSKA fans during his side's 2-1 Champions League Group D win at the Arena Khimki.

The Ivory Coast international then warned on Friday that black players may consider boycotting the 2018 World Cup in Russia unless the issue is addressed properly.

While CSKA officials insist there is no case to answer despite Toure's claims, disciplinary proceedings have been opened against the club by UEFA.

Romanian referee Hategan and his fellow officials will also be the subject of an investigation after they failed to execute the "three-step protocol" established by UEFA.

At the first sign of racism the referee is to stop the game and issue a public address to the fans requesting the behaviour desist.

The second step will then be executed if the racist behaviour does not end after the game has been restarted, with the match halted further and the teams sent to the dressing rooms.

If the racist conduct continues following this measure after play has been resumed once more then the third and final step is for the match to be abandoned.

A statement read: "UEFA will publish the findings of this internal investigation once the disciplinary case has been dealt with by UEFA's independent Control and Disciplinary Body on October 30."

Meanwhile, City manager Manuel Pellegrini has urged UEFA to take the appropriate action against CSKA.

And Pellegrini came to the defence of the Ivorian midfielder, insisting he acted in the right way after raising the issue.

"I think Yaya did the right thing to say what happened. I have talked with Yaya," Pellegrini said.

This week UEFA have been trying to stamp out racism and Toure was wearing an armband which read 'Say no to racism'.

And Pellegrini believes UEFA have to back up their campaign with action.

"I supposed Uefa is doing a special campaign against racism. I think they do the right things for the future so there is not a repeat but I don't know what they are going to do [now]," he said.

Pellegrini was asked if he would support Toure if he were to react to racist abuse in the future by walking off the pitch.

He replied: "I hope it will not happen in the future."

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