Uefa have fined Lazio the paltry amount of 40,000 euros (£32,500) following racist chanting by their fans during a Europa League game at Tottenham last month.
Jermain Defoe, Aaron Lennon and Andros Townsend were reportedly subjected to monkey chants during the match.
In a whitewashing campaign Uefa is planning on using the Champions League and Europa League matches next week to showcase activities organised by the governing body and the equality group Football Against Racism in Europe.
But actions speak louder than words, and lets look at some recent Uefa fines, to put the Lazio fine into perspective:
- £16,700 to Porto for their fans’ racist abuse during Europa League match against Manchester City
- £32,500 to Lazio for their fans racist chanting against Spurs.
- £80,000 to Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner for revealing a sponsor’s logo on his underpants during Euro 2012
So Nicklas Bendtner was fined more for guerilla marketing than Porto and Lazio combined or racial chanting. That is not taking a stance against racism. That is paying lip-service to it.
These “derisory fines” are not a punishment to clubs. Its a rounding error on their wage bill.
The only way that Uefa can show that they are serious about racism is to start to deduct points or ban teams from European competitions.