Dani Alves abuse: Sepp Blatter labels banana incident an 'outrage' as Alves sparks ingenious social media trend

A number of player including Neymar, Mario Balotelli and Sergio Aguero have copied Alves decision to eat a banana thrown at him during Barcelona's 3-2 win over Villarreal

Barcelona defender Dani Alves sparked an ingenious social media campaign against racism in football as support flooded in from fellow professionals for his decision to eat at banana thrown at him by an opposition fan.

Neymar, Mario Balotelli, Sergio Aguero and Luis Suarez were among those who posted pictures of themselves taking bites out of bananas in tribute to Alves' unconventional actions in his side's Primera Division match at Villarreal on Sunday.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter has branded the abuse directed at Alves an "outrage" and promised zero tolerance towards discrimination at the World Cup, while Villarreal took swift action by identifying the culprit and handing them a lifetime stadium ban.

Alves' response to the banana being thrown on to the pitch in front of him as he prepared to take a corner was to nonchalantly pick it up, peel it and take a bite before continuing with the game.

The 30-year-old, who has been the victim of racist abuse before during his time in La Liga, said: "You need to take these situations with a dose of humour."

Players across Europe paid homage on Twitter and Instagram, including Suarez, who served an eight-match ban for racially abusing Patrice Evra.

Alves' Barca and Brazil team-mate Neymar led the way after posting a picture on Instagram of himself holding a banana, while writing "We are all monkeys".

Balotelli, AC Milan's former Manchester City striker, posted a picture of himself in a similar pose.

Suarez posted a picture on Twitter of himself and Liverpool team-mate Philippe Coutinho taking bites out of bananas, along with the words: "#SayNoToRacism #WeAreAllMonkeys."

Argentina and Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero put up an image of him and Brazil women's superstar Marta eating bananas, accompanied with the message: "With my colleague Marta from Brazil we say #NoToRacism. We are all equal."

Barcelona teammate, Neymar, showing his support for Dani Alves Barcelona teammate, Neymar, showing his support for Dani Alves Tottenham trio Emmanuel Adebayor, Nacer Chadli, Moussa Dembele and Liverpool's Brazil midfielder Lucas Leiva all gave Alves their backing.

Blatter admitted he was appalled by the treatment of Alves.

The FIFA chief said on Twitter: "What DaniAlvesD2 tolerated last night is an outrage. We must fight all forms of discrimination united. Will be zero tolerance at #WorldCup."

Mario Balotelli shows his support for Dani Alves after the Barcelona star was racially abused Mario Balotelli shows his support for Dani Alves after the Barcelona star was racially abused Barca gave their player their "complete support and solidarity" and thanked Villarreal for their "immediate condemnation" of the incident.

Villarreal later revealed they had, with the help of fans, found out who the culprit was, had withdrawn their season ticket and banned them from the El Madrigal stadium for life.

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'