Emre denies racism allegations made by Zokora

The former Inter midfielder, now of Fenerbahce, says that he erroneously used a word that he learned in England, and reiterates that the matter was settled on the pitch
Fenerbahce's Emre Belozoglu has denied allegations that he racially abused Didier Zokora during his side's 2-0 win over Trabzonspor on Sunday.

Television cameras appeared to show the former Newcastle man aim a racial slur in the Ivorian's direction during the feisty clash, a claim which Zokora backed up following the contest.

Emre initially confirmed that he had insulted Zokora, but has now denied that he bears any ill will towards the ex-Sevilla midfielder.

"If there's the slightest feeling of racism inside me, may Allah rip my heart out. The incident was settled on the pitch"
"There's no place for racism in our [Turkish] culture - it's a sin. If there's the slightest feeling of racism inside me, may Allah rip my heart out," he said during a press conference.

"I didn't use the expression that Zokora quoted. I used a word that I learned in England, which I don't find appropriate. The incident was settled on the pitch."

The press conference was also attended by Emre's Nigerian team-mate Joseph Yobo, who was quick to defend the Turkey international.

"Emre has been a good friend of mine since I got here. Zokora is also a friend of mine, and I'm sorry to have witnessed an incident between the two," Yobo began.

"I wouldn't have come to Turkey if Emre was a racist. He's a very ambitious player, but racism is not one of his goals.

"Since I came to Turkey [in 2010], I haven't encountered any racism. This type of thing exists in England, but there, clubs have declared war on it."