Balotelli almost walks off pitch after racist abuse

Balotelli almost walks off pitch after racist abuse

Brescia striker Mario Balotelli threatened to leave the field after suffering racist abuse in his side’s Serie A match at Hellas Verona.

Television pictures showed the former Manchester City and Liverpool forward pick up the ball and kick it into the stands before making to leave the pitch in the 54th minute of the match.

He was convinced to stay by team-mates, Verona players and officials before referee Maurizio Mariani initiated the anti-racism protocol.

The game was temporarily suspended while a message was read out by the stadium announcer warned that the match would be abandoned if further racist abuse was to occur.

It was the second time such a protocol has been followed in Serie A this weekend after the match between Roma and Napoli was briefly halted when territorial chants were directed at the Napoli supporters.

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