Stadium bans or fine or both have been handed out to 171 Juventus fans following the scandal of racist chants aimed at Inter striker Romelu Lukaku during a Coppa Italia semifinal first leg match earlier this month.
This according to Italian news agency ANSA, via FCInterNews, who report that Turin police are in the midst of an investigation into the incident, and have decided upon the punishment of stadium bans, fines, or both for a total of 171 Bianconeri fans who had hurled abuse at the Nerazzurri striker from the stands.
The Coppa Italia semifinal first leg between Inter and Juventus at the Allianz Stadium on April 4 ended in chaos, with racist abuse of Inter striker Lukaku at the heart of it.
The 29-year-old Belgian international had started to receive boos from some Juventus supporters in the stands following a late challenge on Bianconeri defender Federico Gatti, for which he was booked.
Mixed in with these whistles and jeers were racist “monkey” chants as well as “racially derogatory” language.
A report from three investigators for the FIGC (Italian FA) who were present at the match describes racial abuse and chants that were audible from a “majority” of the 5034 Bianconeri supporters who had been present in the first tier of the Tribuna Sud stand.
After scoring a late equalizer from the penalty spot, Lukaku celebrated by “silencing” the Tribuna Sud stand, both with a gesture and by shouting “Silence! Silence!”
Referee Davide Massa deemed this to be inciting the crowd with his celebration, and so the Belgian received a second yellow card, although the player’s suspension for the second leg on Wednesday has been overturned by an executive pardon by FIGC Preisdent Gabriele Gravina due to the mitigating circumstances.
Following the incident, Juventus quickly identified two fans who had been responsible for aiming racist chants at the Inter striker and handed out stadium bans of their own.
However, extensive further punishment has followed, with police investigators analyzing video and audio sources to find that at least 250 Bianconeri fans had been responsible for engaging in racist abuse of Lukaku.
According to ANSA, out of those fans confirmed to have been engaged in the racist abuse, 171 have been identified so far, whilst the investigation is ongoing to identify more and hand out appropriate punishment.