Former Juventus midfielder Edgar Davids believes racism is not spoken about enough, following the latest case of abuse in Spanish football.
On Sunday, Levante midfielder Papakouli Diop was involved in an angry exchange with Atletico Madrid fans, who the Senegal international claimed made monkey gestures and noises towards him.
Diop kicked the ball into the crowd after the final whistle, as he was ready to take a corner in front of Atleti fans, and after the match said racism ‘happens at all stadiums’ in La Liga and must be ‘stopped now’.
Davids, who was born in the South American country of Suriname, said ‘education is pivotal’ in ending racism but argued society needs to be brave and discuss the issue of bigotry more.
“I always advocate against racism,” the 41-year-old former Netherlands international said on Monday.
“Education is pivotal around the world. I think we don’t speak enough about it.”
Diop’s outburst came just a week after bananas were thrown at Barcelona full-back Dani Alves, which has sparked a wave of criticism regarding racism in Spanish football.
Davids, who was speaking in Turin, said Italy have ‘taken a couple of steps forward against racism’ but speculated that a tradition of bigotry against black players could have cost the country more talented players.
“A player like (Mario) Balotelli emerged because he’s quality, that’s for sure,” Davids said.
“You never know, though, with the other black players who are not as talented what happens in the lower ranks. I don’t know and don’t want to talk about it.”