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UEFA officially charges Croatia with racist behavior

Soccer Euro 2012 Italy Croatia

Croatian fans cheer after a flare has been thrown onto the pitch during the Euro 2012 soccer championship Group C match between Italy and Croatia in Poznan, Poland, Thursday, June 14, 2012. (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)


The racism issue that continues to darken the edges of an otherwise fantastic, high-scoring European Championship tournament may be moving into a new phase given Saturday’s announcement of a formal charge.

UEFA, European soccer’s governing body, has formally charged Croatia of racism, opening a case against that country’s association after reports of fans making monkey chants toward Italian forward Mario Balotelli, who is black.

UEFA’s charges stem from Croatian supporters’ actions Thursday in Poznan, Poland; the incidents in question include “racist chants” and “racist symbols.” There were also fireworks thrown onto the field, briefly delaying the game at one point.

The displays of far-right flags and the monkey chants are the most serious accusations.

FARE executive director Piara Powar, who has unfortunately been heard from quite often during this tournament, told The Associated Press: “It was fairly consistent throughout the game. It was at its most intense as he was substituted and left the field.”

ProSoccerTalk is doing its best to keep you up to date on what’s going on in Poland and Ukraine. Check out the site’s Euro 2012 page and look at the site’s previews, predictions, and coverage of all the events defining UEFA’s championship.