The former FC Barcelona player says nothing has changed about racism in football as he recounts the moment when he walked off the football pitch during a friendly game involving his club AC Milan and lower-division side Pro Patria after series of racist abuse from the fans of the latter club.
That incident happened in 2013 and Kevin-Prince Boateng still feels proud about what he did as Milan teammates later joined the Ghanaian to abandon the game completely.
The Black Lives Matter campaign has been intensified following the death of Africa-American George Floyd after Derek Chauvin, a white police officer knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down. Floyd will later be confirmed dead and according to Prince Boateng the dreadful event is not news anymore as he opens more about racism from a personal perspective and experience.
Boateng recalls the full event to theplayerstribune.com :
“Seven years ago, I was playing for Milan in a friendly game when a group of fans made monkey noises every time one of our black players touched the ball.” Boateng said.
“After 26 minutes I told the referee, “If they do that again, I’m gonna stop playing. He said, “No, don’t worry, just continue. Then, as I was trying to dribble past a player, I heard them again.
I grabbed the ball, booted it toward the stands and began to walk off the pitch.” he added.
“It wasn’t the first time I had been racially abused. But this time I just exploded. When the referee tried to get me to play on, I said, “Shut the fuck up.” (Sorry for my language.) I told him, “You had the power to do something. You did nothing.” When a rival player wanted me to stay on, I said, “You shut the fuck up as well. What did you do about it? Do you like what they’re doing?
As I walked towards the tunnel, our captain, Massimo Ambrosini, asked me, “Are you sure about what you’re doing? I said, “One hundred percent sure.” the 2010 World Cup Ghana star explained.