Italy coach Marcello Lippi insisted Monday that racism was not a problem in Italian football but a problem of society.
The 61-year-old’s comments come after Juventus were last week fined 20,000 euros for racist chants their fans directed at Inter Milan’s Ghanian striker Mario Balotelli.
But questioned on the subject by students during a visit to Vicenza, in north-eastern Italy, Lippi, who lead Italy to the 2006 World Cup title, said: “In Italy there is no case of racism in football.
“Racism is a problem which isn’t part of our makeup. It’s part of civil society, but unfortunately you have to talk about it when ten or twenty idiots want to make themselves heard in a stadium.”