Neymar on Sunday claimed that he had been the victim of racism as he was one of five players sent off in a mass brawl at the end of Olympique de Marseille’s 1-0 win over Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain.
PSG’s Brazilian star appeared to accuse Alvaro Gonzalez of calling him a “monkey” in a series of furious tweets after he was sent off in stoppage-time for slapping the Marseille defender on the back of the head.
“Look at the racism. That’s why I hit him,” Neymar, who was returning from COVID-19 quarantine, said as he left the pitch.
“The only regret I have is not hitting this idiot in the face,” Neymar wrote on Twitter after the game.
Neymar was red-carded after a video assistant referee (VAR) review, while teammates Layvin Kurzawa and Leandro Paredes were also sent off. Marseille striker Dario Benedetto and defender Jordan Amavi were also expelled.
“It’s easy for VAR to show my ‘aggression’. Now I’d like to them to show the image of the racist who called me a ‘MONKEY SON OF A BITCH’. I’d really like that!” Neymar wrote on Twitter.
Florian Thauvin’s close-range volley on 31 minutes earned Marseille a first win over their rivals since November 2011, but the ugly scenes overshadowed the game.
“[Neymar] told me it was a racist insult, but I didn’t hear anything on the pitch,” PSG coach Thomas Tuchel said.
“There is no place for racism in football, but I don’t think that was the case,” Marseille coach Andre Villas-Boas told Telefoot. “We’ll have to look at it.”
Telefoot reported that Gonzalez replied “What racism?” when he was asked about the incident.
He posted on Twitter a picture of himself surrounded by multiracial teammates.
“There’s no place for racism,” the Spaniard wrote. “Sometimes you have to learn to lose and take it on the field.”
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