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Football: Meggiorini escapes sanction over alleged racism

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Serie A disciplinary officials said Wednesday Torino midfielder Riccardo Meggiorini would face no sanctions after being accused of racially abusing Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba.

The officials said discrepancies in the various accounts of what Meggiorini actually said to Pogba meant they could not be sure any racial abuse had taken place.

Pogba claimed he was subjected to a racial insult during the Bianconeri's recent 2-0 win over their city rivals and although Meggiorini later confirmed he had abused the 20-year-old Frenchman, he denied his invective was racist in nature.

Serie A disciplinary officials heard from representatives of both players, as well as players who witnessed the scene, and issued a long statement describing what is alleged to have happened on the day.

But they said Meggiorini would not be punished because of "a contradiction in the various statements given by players from both teams" on the incident.

Racism, which is no stranger to Italian football and stadiums, came under the spotlight in January when AC Milan star Kevin-Prince Boateng led a pitch walk-off during a friendly when he was targeted by racist chanting.

It also sparked debate within football authorities about how best to tackle the problem, with a number of high-profile incidents across Europe.

Both Juventus, crowned champions on Sunday, and Torino are in action later Wednesday against Atalanta and Genoa respectively.

jd/bc

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130508/football-meggiorini-escapes-sanction-over-alleged-racism