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The new FIGC president has come under a lot of criticism for racist and sexist comments but the AC Milan chief has leapt to his defence

AC Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani defended the appointment of Carlo Tavecchio as president of the Italian Football Federation (FIGC).

Tavecchio was elected into the role after claiming 63.63 per cent of the votes on Monday, beating former Italy and Milan midfielder Demetrio Albertini to the job.

The 71-year-old has been at the centre of a race storm in the build-up to the elections, after an alleged slur made at a meeting of Italy's amateur leagues last month.

Tavecchio allegedly made reference to "banana eaters" in response to the influx of foreign players in Serie A, a remark which provoked widespread criticism.

Patrick Vieira, who played in the Italian top flight with Milan, Inter and Juventus during his career, publicly voiced his disapproval on Tuesday, but Galliani has endorsed the appointment.

"Apparently 16 out of 20 clubs have voted for Carlo Tavecchio, a huge amount," he said.

"It was a wrong sentence [to say]. We can't endlessly criticise it. Of course it was wrong, but it was only a passing remark.

"There's no image problem at all, the image is of no importance. It's more important to do what we have to. It is this image that will count in the future."

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