Tag Archives: delegate

Lazio"s anti-semitic fans must be punished by UEFA says Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas

UEFA have to act quickly against Lazio if fans found guilty of anti-Semitic chants, says Villas-Boas

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UPDATED:

22:07 GMT, 22 November 2012

Andre Villas-Boas has urged UEFA to take action against Lazio if their fans are found guilty of chanting anti-Semitic songs at Tottenham during tonight's Europa League draw at the Stadio Olimpico.

The home supporters chanted 'Juden Tottenham' during the first half of the goalless draw, which came the day after fans of the London club were attacked in a vicious scuffle in a city centre pub.

Spelling it out: Lazio fans display a banner and Palestine flags at the Stadio Olympico

Spelling it out: Lazio fans display a banner and Palestine flags at the Stadio Olympico

UEFA fined Lazio 32,500 for their fans monkey chanting at three Spurs players during the reverse fixture in September, and Villas-Boas hopes the organisation move swiftly to establish the facts.

'It will take another investigation,' the Tottenham manager told a press conference.

Furious: Andre Villas-Boas greets Lazio counterpart Vladimir Petkovic after the match - but the Portuguese was livid with the home fans

Furious: Andre Villas-Boas (left) greets Lazio counterpart Vladimir Petkovic after the match – but the Portuguese was livid with the home fans

'It happened last time and it was acted upon quickly by UEFA. We will have to wait and see if there is anything to act upon. If there is UEFA have to act.'

UEFA are expected to decide whether to launch an investigation tomorrow when they receive the match delegate's report.

Overshadowed: Ultras ran amok in Rome's Drunken Ship pub on Wednesday night, injuring several Spurs fans

Overshadowed: Ultras ran amok in Rome's Drunken Ship pub on Wednesday night, injuring several Spurs fans

The game had already been overshadowed before kick-off by the shocking and brutal attack on a group of the club's supporters early this morning.

Around 20 men burst in to the Drunken Sailor pub in Campo dei Fiori at around 1am and beat the fans with sticks and glass bottles. One fan is recovering in hospital after being stabbed in the head and leg.

No way through: Lazio and Spurs conjured a goalless draw

No way through: Lazio and Spurs conjured a goalless draw

Villas-Boas expressed his disappointment at the attack, saying: 'It is an extremely difficult moment for them.

'We have to be aware there is a police investigation and I'm not in control of all facts. But there is massive disappointment and the fear they've gone through is hard.

'To point a finger at this point would be incorrect but (we) give them a message of support. As a club, we will try to help them overcome this.'

Chelsea lodge FA complaint over Mark Clattenburg

Chelsea lodge complaint with FA about Clattenburg's 'racial abuse' of Mikel BUT drop allegation regarding Mata

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UPDATED:

19:39 GMT, 31 October 2012

Back so soon, lads

Chelsea and Manchester United lock horns again tonight in the Capital One League Cup – and you can follow the live action HERE

Chelsea have lodged a formal complaint with the Football Association which accuses referee Mark Clattenburg of using inappropriate language directed at John Obi Mikel during Sunday's Premier League defeat to Manchester United.

The club, though, say there is not enough evidence to support the second allegation of abuse towards Spanish midfielder Juan Mata.

The future of Clattenburg could come
down to whether he used the word ‘monkey’ in his exchange with Mikel.
The Consett official categorically denies the allegations.

In a statement on their website, Chelsea said: 'This is a result of a thorough investigation carried out by the club, and led by outside legal counsel, of all information available to us including interviews with a number of players and staff.

'Following Sunday's Premier League game against Manchester United, club board members were quickly made aware, upon entering the home dressing room after the final whistle, that there were allegations of inappropriate language directed at Chelsea FC players by Mr Clattenburg during the game.

Row: Chelsea have lodged an official complaint about the way Mark Clattenburg spoke to John Obi Mikel

Row: Chelsea have lodged an official complaint about the way Mark Clattenburg spoke to John Obi Mikel

Row: Chelsea have lodged an official complaint with the FA over the way in which Mark Clattenburg spoke to John Obi Mikel

'Board members began establishing the details of the allegations, speaking to all relevant players and staff.

'After those initial interviews it was clear that the matter had to be reported. The correct protocol for doing so was to report the incidents to the match delegate, and the club took immediate steps to inform him as soon as he was available. It was not a decision the club took lightly.

'Since reporting the matter to the delegate, the club and outside legal counsel have conducted further investigations. Having completed that process we have now followed the correct protocol and lodged a formal complaint with The FA regarding John Mikel Obi.

'There was not sufficient evidence to support a second claim to The FA with regard to the alleged verbal abuse of another first team player.

'We will cooperate fully with The FA and the Police as they each investigate the matter. As events on Sunday are now subject to those investigations we are unable to comment further until those processes are complete.'

Mikel was selected for Wednesday night's Carling Cup tie against Manchester United, and Roberto di Matteo said he had little doubt all his players would be able to focus on football.

He said: 'I am very confident we can fully focus on the game. I always speak to my players before the game and today they are OK to play. I hope we have the right motivation to go out and win this game.'

'We have some suspensions and injuries and it is a chance to refresh the team because we played with 10 and nine men [on Sunday], which cost us a lot.'

Sir Alex Ferguson added: 'I don't think Sunday will make any difference. It is a cup tie so hopefully we can navigate it and progress.'

The Sun newspaper has reported that Nigeria midfielder Mikel, who did not hear the alleged racist slur, was told by team-mate Ramires that he was a called ‘a monkey’ in the match against Manchester United on Sunday.

When Ramires told Mikel that he thought he’d been called ‘a monkey’, at least three members of the Chelsea playing and coaching staff asked: ‘Are you certain’.

Shocked: The initial claims regarding Juan Mata, though, will not be pursued by the club

Shocked: The initial claims regarding Juan Mata, though, will not be pursued by the club

Shocked: The initial claims regarding Juan Mata, though, will not be pursued by the club
CHELSEA STATEMENT IN FULL

'Chelsea Football Club today lodged a formal complaint with The Football Association regarding inappropriate language directed at John Mikel Obi by referee Mark Clattenburg. This is a result of a thorough investigation carried out by the club, and led by outside legal counsel, of all information available to us including interviews with a number of players and staff.

'Following Sunday's Premier League game against Manchester United, club board members were quickly made aware, upon entering the home dressing room after the final whistle, that there were allegations of inappropriate language directed at Chelsea FC players by Mr Clattenburg during the game.

'Board members began establishing the details of the allegations, speaking to all relevant players and staff. After those initial interviews it was clear that the matter had to be reported. The correct protocol for doing so was to report the incidents to the match delegate, and the club took immediate steps to inform him as soon as he was available. It was not a decision the club took lightly.

'Since reporting the matter to the delegate, the club and outside legal counsel have conducted further investigations. Having completed that process we have now followed the correct protocol and lodged a formal complaint with The FA regarding John Mikel Obi. There was not sufficient evidence to support a second claim to The FA with regard to the alleged verbal abuse of another first team player.

'We will cooperate fully with The FA and the Police as they each investigate the matter. As events on Sunday are now subject to those investigations we are unable to comment further until those processes are complete.'

He was questioned by team-mates and staff who asked if, with Clattenburg speaking with such a strong North East accent, the official had said ‘shut up, Mikel’, rather than ‘shut up, monkey’, which has been alleged.

Ramires, who does not speak fluent English is adamant that he heard the slur, although Clattenburg denies the claims and is supported by his two assistants.

Earlier on Wednesday, Sportsmail revealed Clattenburg has admitted privately that he wished he had not sent off Fernando Torres in Sunday's toxic fixture.

There is no facility for Chelsea to
appeal Torres' dismissal. Regulations stipulate that second yellow cards
cannot be rescinded. The Spain striker will, therefore, serve his
one-match ban tonight when the two sides meet again at Stamford Bridge
in the Capital One Cup.

In the days following the controversial match, Chelsea employed independent lawyers to investigate the claims, which included an allegation that Mata was called a 'Spanish t***'.

Chelsea have proceeded with the case, satisfied that the claims game will stand up to the FA’s burden of proof.

The club must satisfy an FA commission 'on the balance of probability', but they also have to negotiate the complexities of the Metropolitan Police’s investigation into the affair.

The Met confirmed they had acted on a ‘complaint’ from the Society of Black Lawyers after the European champions accused Clattenburg, who has been taken off the Premier League match list this weekend, of using racist comments.

There are suggestions of seething resentment in some quarters at the way Chelsea had made their complaint public and a desire to see strong action taken against them if the official was cleared.

The Metropolitan Police have became embroiled in their second high-profile football racism case in 12 months after the man behind the mooted black players’ breakaway union, Peter Herbert, wrote to them demanding they investigate Clattenburg.

Herbert defended his intervention, telling Sky Sports News: ‘What we don’t want is for it to be swept away under the carpet. It must be subject to a full and proper investigation. It is to lend some seriousness and some weight behind what is happening in football.’

Herbert admitted his complaint was based on reports rather than first-hand evidence but added: ‘We weren’t there but we don’t need to be there in order to report an incident.

Crucial moment: Clattenburg has admitted he wishes he had not sent off Fernando Torres

Crucial moment: Clattenburg has admitted he wishes he had not sent off Fernando Torres

Was there contact Torres was sent off for diving, but this screen grab seems to show Evans making contact

Was there contact Torres was sent off for diving, but this screen grab seems to show Evans making contact

‘This appears to have had some cogency and so it needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency. I think the Met Police have huge resources, expertise, and I have no doubt that this matter will be resolved and the truth will come out. If we’ve got this completely wrong then, of course, the police will tell us.’

But Professional Footballers’ Association chief executive Gordon Taylor said: ‘Involving police or waiting causes a massive festering of the issue, which has continued to cause problems and is not good for the image of the game.

VIDEO: Clattenburg and Mikel have words on the pitch…

DM.has('rcpv1930696868001','BCVideo');

Referee Mark Clattenburg used racist slurs at John Obi Mikel, Chelsea complain

Ref race row! Chelsea accuse Clattenburg of abusing Mikel and referring to a 'Spanish t***' during fiery United win at the Bridge

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UPDATED:

23:32 GMT, 28 October 2012

Referee Mark Clattenburg was caught up in a storm after being accused of aiming a racist insult at Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel during their 3-2 home defeat by Manchester United.

Chelsea made a complaint to the Premier League after Mikel stormed into the referee's room to demand an apology after claiming Clattenburg made a racist slur when he booked the midfielder in the 76th minute.

One of Chelsea’s Spanish stars is also involved after players claim they heard Clattenburg refer to him as ‘a Spanish t**t’.

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

Chelsea made the official complaint at 7.45pm, but Clattenburg had already been confronted by then. Chief executive Ron Gourlay, along with Mikel and manager Roberto Di Matteo, demanded an apology from Clattenburg during stormy scenes in the referee’s room.

Clattenburg refused and Chelsea decided to take the incredible action of launching an immediate complaint to the Premier League over his choice of language.

According to sources close to the players, they are willing to make statements to the FA’s disciplinary committee this week.

Marching orders: Branislav Ivanovic was sent off (above) while Clattenburg struggled to contain both sides

Marching orders: Branislav Ivanovic was sent off (above) while Clattenburg struggled to contain both sides

Fernando Torres of Chelsea talks to referee Mark Clattenburg

A club spokesman said: ‘We have lodged a complaint to the Premier League match delegate with regards to inappropriate language used by the referee and directed at two of our players in two separate incidents in today’s match. The match delegate will pass the complaint to the Football Association. We will make no further comment at this time.’

Incredibly, the incident occurred on the day Chelsea threw their full support behind the Kick Racism Out of Football campaign. Players from both Chelsea and United — with the notable exception of United’s Ashley Young — wore One Game One Community T-shirts in the pre-match warm-up.

John Terry, serving a four-match ban for racially insulting Anton Ferdinand last October, wore a Kick It Out badge on his tracksuit as he watched the game from the sidelines.

Accused: Clattenburg is alleged to have racially abused John Obi Mikel (right) during Chelsea's defeat

Accused: Clattenburg is alleged to have racially abused John Obi Mikel (right) during Chelsea's defeat

Dispute: Mikel complains to Clattenburg as his side slump to defeat at Stamford Bridge

Dispute: Mikel complains to Clattenburg as his side slump to defeat at Stamford Bridge

Rio Ferdinand, fined 45,000 for his infamous ‘choc ice’ tweet, also ended his feud with Ashley Cole when he shook hands with him before the game.

But all that was forgotten on Sunday night amid amazing and dramatic scenes nearly two hours after the final whistle at Stamford Bridge.

Tough time: Clattenburg was given a hostile reception by the Chelsea fans as he left the field

Tough time: Clattenburg was given a hostile reception by the Chelsea fans as he left the field

Home players heard the alleged comment and will back up Mikel’s story.

The matter is now in the hands of the FA and Premier League officials, who will ask Sky TV for footage from the 20 separate camera angles used for live matches.

Although not all are recorded, they should help confirm whether Clattenburg made an inappropriate or racially aggravated comment.

Winner: Javier Hernandez scores Manchester United's third goal (above) and celebrates (below)

Winner: Javier Hernandez scores Manchester United's third goal (above) and celebrates (below)

 Javier Hernandez scores

Premier League refs also wear microphones, which suggests that evidence by Michael McDonough and Simon Long, who ran the line, or fourth official Michael Jones could be crucial.

There was no comment from Clattenburg at time of going to press despite repeated attempts by Sportsmail.

Chelsea complain referee Mark Clattenburg used "inappropriate language" to players

Chelsea complain ref Clattenburg used 'inappropriate language' to players

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UPDATED:

20:11 GMT, 28 October 2012

Chelsea have confirmed they have lodged a complaint to the Premier League match delegate with regards to 'inappropriate language' used by referee Mark Clattenburg towards two of their players in today's game with Manchester United.

Chelsea have also launched an investigation into reports that a steward was injured by objects that were thrown on to the pitch following United's winning goal at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea fans in the Matthew Harding stand hurled abuse and appeared to throw objects at the United players as they celebrated Javier Hernandez's winner in the 3-2 success at Stamford Bridge.

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

The steward, who was later taken to hospital, fell to the floor at the same time that the fans responded to the celebrations and needed approximately 10 minutes' treatment by paramedics at the side of the pitch.

'We are looking at reports of objects that may have been thrown or incidents around the steward taking a fall,' a Chelsea spokesman said after the match.

'We are investigating all the incidents around that time.

'My information so far is that he slipped and fell, may have hurt his knee, and was being treated by the side of the pitch. He's been taken to hospital.'

Hernandez gestured towards the pocket of home supporters after scoring the winner for United 15 minutes from time.

His captain Patrice Evra then tried to calm him down knowing the Mexican's celebration was likely to anger the Chelsea fans.

More stewards were seen coming to the aid of their injured colleague, who was clearly in pain, before a team of paramedics ran around the edge of the pitch to help him.

After the game Chelsea cordoned off the section of the stand where the fans vented their anger at the United players.

Sid Watkins hailed by Bernie Ecclestone

Irreplaceable! Ecclestone hails late Watkins for his amazing F1 contribution

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UPDATED:

17:38 GMT, 14 September 2012

Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has hailed Sid Watkins as 'irreplaceable' following his death on Wednesday.

Watkins, the FIA medical delegate and race doctor for 26 years from 1978 through to 2004 after being appointed by Ecclestone, passed away after a short illness at the age of 84.

Watkins helped pioneer safety in motor sport, with his work saving the lives of a number of drivers following an accident, as well as ensuring many others avoided serious injuries.

Hailed: Sid Watkins (right) has received praise from all quarters

Hailed: Sid Watkins (right) has received praise from all quarters

'I am pretty sure he is irreplaceable. You only meet somebody of his calibre once in your lifetime,' said Ecclestone of close friend Watkins.

'What Sid did in the way of safety in Formula One was incredible. He gave his whole life to that cause, to make sure it could be as safe as it possibly could be.

'We all owe him a debt of gratitude for his caring and commitment.'

Speaking to formula1.com on the measures Watkins implemented, Ecclestone added: 'When I invited him to join Formula One as its official doctor part way through the 1978 season, we discussed many aspects of safety and medical issues.

'We agreed we needed a proper hospital at the track in the form of a fully equipped medical centre to stabilise injured drivers with immediate treatment, and a helicopter to transport them subsequently to specialist facilities, and that the helicopter pad had to be as close to that trackside hospital as possible.

Irreplaceable: F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone (right) says the sport will miss Watkins

Irreplaceable: F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone (right) says the sport will miss Watkins

'Sid carried all of those things through, and many more. After the accidents to Jochen Rindt and then Ronnie Peterson, I suggested he should have a medical intervention car and he should take responsibility for taking drivers into medical care.

'We always talked things through and worked together, and he then took care of all the medical things which I knew nothing about.'

Sir Jackie Stewart has called for a permanent memorial in Watkins' honour 'to recognise his contribution to motor sport, particularly Formula One'.

Euro 2012: Steven Gerrard wary of red card threat

Gerrard admits he will have to be careful as England wary of red card threat

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UPDATED:

09:31 GMT, 2 June 2012

England skipper Steven Gerrard admits he may have to modify his game to reduce the risk of picking up a red card during Euro 2012.

Gerrard and the rest of the England squad have been spoken to by FIFA and UEFA referees delegate David Elleray about what is permissible ahead of the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

The midfielder admits he could have been booked or dismissed for a challenge on Norwegian player Tom Hogli in the international friendly on May 26 had it been a competitive match.

Lunge: Gerrard will have to be wary about tackles like this

Lunge: Gerrard will have to be wary about tackles like this

Gerard said: 'If I think I can win a tackle fairly, I'll go in and try and win it. We had a referee's meeting last night with David Elleray, going through different scenarios.

'We have to be slightly more careful at international level compared to what we're used to in our league.

Euro 2012 email button

'The tackle last week (on Hogli) might have been a caution or worse, but to me it's fair. It was clean, the side of my foot, no studs.

'It has changed, though. It's something you have to adapt to as a player, especially myself who is a tackler. You can't get away with it at international level.

'You can connect with the ball cleanly but, if you take the man, you get cautioned.

'The players were aware of the different scenarios after the meeting – cautions, bringing men down, surrounding the referee. We're all aware of it. Seven or eight points were made.'

There will be a bigger responsibility on Gerrard in midfield after the loss through injury of experienced duo Frank Lampard and Gareth Barry, who have won 143 caps between them.

But Gerrard admits he cannot afford to hold back even if it means he runs the risk of joining the pair on the sidelines.

He said: 'It's a huge blow to lose Frank, especially on the back of losing Gareth as well. They're two very important midfielders for this squad.

'It's a similar situation to losing Rio (Ferdinand) in the last World Cup. I've experienced missing a big tournament and there's nothing worse in your career. I know what it feels like.

Blow: Gerrard admits Frank Lampard's injury is terrible for England

Blow: Gerrard admits Frank Lampard's injury is terrible for England

'People say will I wrap myself in cotton wool but you risk getting injured worse if you're pulling out of tackles or standing away from things.

'You've got to play your normal game and hopefully you come through. Injuries are part and parcel of the game. They happen. Fingers crossed we don't get any more.

'Other countries are suffering the same thing. It happened with Yann M'Vila with France last night. I'm sure he would have been a big player for them. You have to deal with it.'

What might alter is Gerrard's role in the centre of the park.

He said: 'The manager has spoken to me and said I might have to play deeper and be more disciplined.

'We have to share the responsibility around the squad. Gareth is a very good midfielder and we will also miss Frank's goals.

'We have to share the goals around the squad and take on the responsibility.'

Barcelona complain to UEFA over San Siro pitch

Barca-moaner! Guardiola and co complain to UEFA over San Siro pitch after stalemate

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UPDATED:

14:40 GMT, 29 March 2012

Barcelona have lodged an official complaint with UEFA about the state of the pitch at the San Siro for Wednesday's 0-0 Champions League quarter-final first leg draw with AC Milan.

Players continually slipped on the surface and chunks of turf came loose at regular intervals as the Serie A side frustrated the holders ahead of Tuesday's return leg at the Nou Camp.

'(Barcelona) passed the matter over to UEFA delegate Mikalai Varabyov at the post-match meeting,' the Catalan giants said in a statement on Thursday.

Firing blanks: Barcelona were held to a 0-0 draw by AC Milan on Wednesday night

Firing blanks: Barcelona were held to a 0-0 draw by AC Milan on Wednesday night

'Varabyov has included the complaint in his report and UEFA will demand an explanation from the Italian club.

'In the end we adapt to everything… but it's clear that this was a problem for the spectacle,' said Barca coach Pep Guardiola in his post-match news conference.

Turfed out: Chunks of the pitch were seen coming loose and flying up

Turfed out: Chunks of the pitch were seen coming loose and flying up

AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani acknowledged the pitch needed resurfacing and said they were in talks with Inter Milan, who they share the stadium with, to find a solution.

'At the end of the season if we have an agreement it can be done,' Galliani told the Italian sports daily La Gazzetta dello Sport. 'I'll fight for this new pitch.'

Neil Lennon charged over Ibrox ref rant

Lennon charged by SFA over referee rant in Celtic's derby defeat to Rangers

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UPDATED:

16:17 GMT, 26 March 2012

Neil Lennon has been charged by the SFA after after being sent during Sunday's 3-2 defeat to Rangers at Ibrox.

After complaining to referee Calum Murray about his performance in the tunnel, the Celtic manager Lennon was ordered to the stands but watched the second half from the media room.

Afterwards he said: 'My sending-off is a joke. I don't think I deserved to be sent off. My staff are very angry about it, my players are angry and disappointed.

Having a word: The assistant referee talks to Neil Lennon at Ibrox

Having a word: The assistant referee talks to Neil Lennon at Ibrox

CRYSTAL CLEAR….

Lennon has allegedly breached
rule 203 which states that: 'no member of team staff shall commit
misconduct at a match, including but not limited to committing acts of
the kind described in the schedule of offences in annex C' which relates
to 'misconduct at a match by dissent, the adoption of aggressive
behaviour towards a match official and the repeated use of offensive,
abusing and insulting language.'

'I spoke quite quietly and coldly to the referee in the tunnel. I didn't swear and didn't point any fingers.

'I told him I wasn't happy with his first-half performance. I was speaking to the match delegate after the game and their version of events are different from mine but I've got witnesses to back me up.

'Alan Thompson (coach) and our PR person was there, a couple of other members of staff and players.'

Frustrated: Lennon's Celtic side could have won the title at Ibrox

Frustrated: Lennon's Celtic side could have won the title at Ibrox

Lennon has until Tuesday April 3 to respond and a principal hearing date has been set for Thursday, April 19.

The Celtic boss has allegedly breached
rule 203 which states that 'no member of team staff shall commit
misconduct at a match, including but not limited to committing acts of
the kind described in the schedule of offences in annex C' which relates
to 'misconduct at a match by dissent, the adoption of aggressive
behaviour towards a match official and the repeated use of offensive,
abusing and insulting language'.

Porto deny City"s racism claims

Porto deny Manchester City's racism claims

Porto have hit back at allegations
that Manchester City players were racially abused by home fans during
Thursday night's Europa League tie at the Estadio do Dragao.

UEFA will wait to see the report
from their match delegate Joti Chatzialexiou before deciding whether to
launch a full investigation.

Targeted: Yaya Toure (above) and Mario Balotelli

Targeted: Yaya Toure (above) and Mario Balotelli

But City are standing by their claim that Mario Balotelli was the victim of racist chants during the 2-1 first-leg win, while Yaya Toure also appeared to be targeted by supporters.

However, Porto suggested that chants dedicated to their striker Hulk, or even City's Sergio 'Kun' Aguero, were maybe mistaken for racist noises. 'Kun, Kun, Kun, Hulk, Hulk, Hulk, can be easily confused with racist chants,' said spokesman Rui Cerqueira.

'Nothing abnormal happened, no-one noticed anything strange, not even the UEFA delegates that worked closely with Porto during the match. We are very proud of having a multi-racial team. Porto players have never felt the slightest hint of racism and we were very surprised with the accusations.'

Sporting ready to offer Stefan Savic a way out of Manchester City

Sporting ready to offer Savic a way out of Manchester City

Sporting Lisbon want to sign Manchester City defender Stefan Savic.

The Montenegrin, also targeted by Roma, has grown frustrated at his lack of playing time at City followinghis summer transfer and wants a temporary move.

Frustrated: Stefan Savic

Frustrated: Stefan Savic

Sporting wanted Savic, 20, before City stepped in with a 6m bid but believe they will struggle to sign him outright now.

Roberto Mancini is considering bringing in more experienced cover at centre back with Kolo Toure due to join Ivory Coast for the Africa Cup of Nations and unsure about his long-term future.

Savic”s agent Zoran Stojadinovic said: “He is on his way out of City in January and will leave on loan.”

Brazilian club Cruzeiro want City striker Roque Santa Cruz on a permanent deal and plan to use striker Leo Bonatini, 17, as a makeweight.

Santa Cruz, 30, is on loan at Real Betis but Cruzeiro sporting director Dimas Fonseca said: “A delegate has made contact about a transfer.”