FOOTBALL RACISM

‘Banana eater’ row: Tavecchio made FA boss

'Banana eater' row: Tavecchio made FA boss
Carlo Tavecchio was elected president of the Italian football federation on Monday. Photo: Corr/Wikipedia
Scandal-hit Carlo Tavecchio was elected president of the Italian football federation on Monday, winning 63.63 percent of the vote despite a furore sparked by a racist comment during his campaign.

"I will be president of everyone, especially those who expressed their dissent," an emotional Tavecchio told a press conference following his election.

Tavecchio, 71, sparked outrage in Italy three weeks ago when he referred to African players as "banana eaters" during a speech saying Italy should enforce stringent requirements for non-European Union players.

"Here we get 'Opti Poba' who previously ate bananas and then suddenly becomes a first-team player at Lazio," he said.

Moved to tears after his election, Tavecchio admitted he was "little at ease with words", but promised to "better my rough ways" after a difficult race for the post of president, during which tens of thousands of people had signed a petition calling on him to withdraw his candidacy.


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