UN chief calls Muntari an ‘inspiration’ after racist incident

The United Nations top human rights official has hailed the Ghana international for walking off the pitch at Cagliari following alleged racist chants

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein says Ghana international Sulley Muntari took the right action to walk off the pitch following alleged racist chants from part of the crowd at Stadio Sant'Elia where Cagliari were playing host to the midfielder’s club Pescara in the Italian Serie A on Sunday.

Muntari was shown a yellow card in the 90th minute for dissent after he complained to the referee who had told him to stop talking to the crowd.

He has been handed a one-match ban for walking off the pitch without permission.

Article continues below

“Muntari is an inspiration to all of us here at the UN human rights office,” al-Hussein told reporters in Geneva, calling on Fifa to pay greater attention to the "persistent problem of racism" at games.

“Racism and expressions of bigotry should not be tolerated at major sporting events," he added.

The Ghana player has been drawing support from across the globe since the incident, with his club Pescara "firmly standing" by him while FIFPro, the worldwide representative organisation for professional footballers, called for the player’s one-game suspension to be rescinded.