Patrick Vieira leads Manchester City youngsters from field amid accusations of racism
A friendly match between City's elite development under-21 team and Croatian side HNK Rijeka was cancelled
Wednesday 23 July 2014
A friendly match between Manchester City's elite development under-21 team and Croatian side HNK Rijeka has been cancelled after one of City's players was allegedly racially abused by an opposition player.
City officials decided to withdraw their players after 19-year-old French midfielder Seko Fofana was allegedly racially abused by an opponent a minute before half-time during the match in Novigrad, west Croatia. HNK Rijeka were leading 1-0 when play was abandoned.
A statement posted on the club's website read: "Manchester City's EDS U21 game with HNK Rijeka has today been cancelled due to an alleged incident of racial abuse toward the club's young midfielder, Seko Fofana by a member of the opposing team.
"Club representatives in Croatia and in Manchester are liaising with officials, the match organisers and the Croatian Football Association to pursue this matter further."
HNK Rijeka, however, appear to have distanced themselves from speculation that one of their players made racist comments towards Fofana.
A statement on their website read: "Manchester City coach Patrick Vieira entered the field, something was discussed with the referee, and then to the amazement of a well-filled stadium he took his team off the pitch. What are the reasons? They are known only to him."
France Under-19 international Fofana joined City from Ligue 1 side FC Lorient in January 2013.
According to the club's Twitter feed, Fofana had been sent off for an "off the ball" incident moments before the match was abandoned.
Latest in Sport
- 1 The black and blue dress: Makers considering a white and gold version
- 2 Husband and wife die holding hands within hours of each other after 67 years of marriage
- 3 What color is The Dress, white and gold or blue and black? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
- 5 Fearne Cotton quits Radio 1 after ten years for 'family and new adventures'
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
Half of Ukip voters say they are prejudiced against people of other races
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Aqsa Mahmood branded a 'disgrace' by her parents after claims she recruited three UK girls flying to Middle East