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Udinese to play game behind closed doors after racist abuse towards Mike Maignan

AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan was racially abused at Udinese (Andrea Bressanutti/AP)
AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan was racially abused at Udinese (Andrea Bressanutti/AP)

Udinese have been ordered to play one match behind closed doors after AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan was racially abused during a Serie A match on Saturday.

The sanction has been imposed by the league’s sports judge, Gerardo Mastrandrea.

The judgement states the one-match stadium closure was the minimum sanction which could have been imposed, and was chosen to reflect Udinese’s active stance and willingness right from the start to identify those responsible.

The club announced on Monday they had banned a supporter for life for racially abusing Maignan.

France international Maignan reported to referee Fabio Maresca that he had been abused and left the pitch.

Speaking after the game, which restarted after a delay of around 10 minutes, Maignan told Milan TV: “I heard them making monkey noises. After it happened a second time, I went to the dugout to inform them of what had happened behind the goal.

“This shouldn’t exist in the world of football, but unfortunately for many years this is a recurrence. We all have to react, we must do something because you can’t play like this.”

The incident involving Maignan occurred on the same day that Coventry midfielder Kasey Palmer alleged he was racially abused during a Championship match at Sheffield Wednesday.