In the Ukrainian premier soccer league in a match between Shakhtar Donetsk and Dynamo Kiev, there were apparent racist chants directed towards a Brazilian soccer player named Taison. He picked up the ball and kicked it into the crowd, then striking his middle finger to them. Taison was presented with a red card, which leads to expulsion from the current game and suspension from the following game. He left the field in tears being consoled by other players from the opposing team, and his teammates could also be seen sharing those same tears.
As RT would report, “The scenes have been widely condemned, and Taison later took to social media to state his tears were ones of ‘indignation’.” What happened in Ukraine proves that the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has not made significant change or positive direction in controlling the racial abuse of its players.
This incident received partial coverage from sources such as CNN, the BBC, Yahoo! Sports, and Bleacher Report. It is interesting to note the lack of influential athletes who have spoken out in support of Taison, and the lack of change demanded by the onlookers of a blatantly racist act.
Source: “Footballer in Tears as He is Sent Off after Responding to Racist Abuse in Ukraine,” RT International, November 11,2019, www.rt.com/sport/473155-ukraine-footballer-taison-leaves-pitch-tears-racist-abuse/.
Student Researcher: Daniel Dominguez (Indian River State College)
Faculty Evaluator: Elliot D Cohen (Indian River State College)