Monday, May 20, 2019

Koulibaly mask campaign renewed as Napoli fans call for Serie A solidarity

SoccerNews in Serie A 29 Dec 2018

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A group of Napoli fans are encouraging spectators across Italy to take images of Kalidou Koulibaly to matches on Saturday in a show of support for the centre-back, who was subjected to racist abuse against Inter.

‘Quelli del Sangue Azzurro’ – ‘Those with blue blood’ – will print off pictures of the Senegal international’s face and take them to the game against Bologna at the San Paolo.

The match is Napoli’s first since Koulibaly was subjected to racist taunts in the 1-0 defeat to Inter on Wednesday, after which the Nerazzurri were hit with a two-game stadium ban.

The supporter group, who organised a similar show of solidarity in February 2016 after Koulibaly was abused by Lazio fans, want followers of all Serie A clubs to unite in their latest campaign.

People have been encouraged to take paper cut-outs depicting the player or to wear masks of his face, which can be downloaded before the game.

Writing on their Facebook page, the group said: “We thought it wouldn’t happen again, but it wasn’t to be! More racist insults for Kalidou!

“We at QdSA for Napoli-Bologna will all go to the stadium with the face of Koulibaly! Print it yourself and unite wherever you are, at any stadium in Italy and send us your photos!”

On Friday, Napoli defender Faouzi Ghoulam posted a picture on Instagram of him wearing a Koulibaly mask, along with the caption: “Tomorrow, we’ll all be Koulibaly!”

Inter captain Mauro Icardi was also among those to condemn the abuse, which Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti said was reported three times to the match officials.

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