Brazil star Willian has called for “proper sanctions” to be imposed upon Dynamo Kiev after former Shakhtar Donetsk team-mate Taison was targeted with racial abuse by opposition supporters in Sunday’s derby encounter.
The Selecao star was shown a straight red card for his actions during the encounter, in which his side emerged as 1-0 victors, following an incident in which he responded to xenophobic chants by brandishing his middle finger and booting the ball into the stand.
The game was brought initially to a halt before the forward was dismissed after play resumed by referee Mykola Balakin, much to his disbelief
Shakhtar and their coach Luis Castro released strongly worded statements after the match and Willian – a former team-mate of Taison’s at Shakhtar and with Brazil – urged the authorities to take “proper” action after the Ukrainian Premier League pledged to prosecute those identified as responsible.
Speaking ahead of Brazil’s upcoming clash with Argentina, Willian said: “It’s another sad episode for football.
“We players must do whatever we can to make sure this stops, but the institutions and federations have a greater responsibility on this.
“They must address these situations when they happen and apply the proper sanctions to make sure this kind of thing stops once and for all. These situations make me sad.”
Taison also addressed the incident on his official Instagram account, vowing to never allow such intolerance to silence him.
He wrote: “I love my race, I fight for colour, whatever I do is for us, for love. I will never shut up in the face of such an inhuman and despicable act!
“My tears were of indignation, repudiation and helplessness, helplessness that I could do nothing at that moment!
“But we are taught early on to be strong and to fight! Fight for our rights and for equality! My role is to fight, to beat my chest, to lift my head and keep fighting always!
In a racist society, it is not enough not to be racist, we must be anti-racist! Football needs more respect; the world needs more respect! Thank you all for the support messages! We continue the fight.”