Galatasaray striker Didier Drogba says being the subject of racist abuse will not force him out of Turkey.
The former Chelsea striker visited the house of the country’s sports minister Suat Kilic following an incident between Galatasaray and their Istanbul rivals Fenerbahce, in which two fans were photographed holding bananas and allegedly making racist gestures towards the Ivory Coast international.
“That was not the first time in the world, it happens. I am really happy in Turkey and I know that it was just an individual act,” Drogba, who joined Galatasaray earlier in Janaury, told Hurriyet Daily News.
Kilic claimed it had not crossed his mind that the fans had the intention of being racist but, in hindsight, was upset by the actions of a tiny proportion of Fernerbahce fans.
“When I was watching, I thought that he would just throw the banana on to the pitch, I did not have the slightest idea that it was a racist gesture. The incidents saddened us, like you,” he said.
Fenerbahce attacker Pierre Webo, a Cameroon international, scored both his team’s goals in a 2-1 win over Drogba’s Galatasaray and appeared to claim that ignoring the problem is the best course of action.
He said: “I think it is best not to speak of it. The more we speak, the worse it gets. That was just not right. We know what racism is but we are very comfortable in Turkey.”