Racist slur allegedly hurled by Adelaide fans at soccer player Roly Bonevacia being investigated
Roly Bonevacia (right) contests the ball during a round 17 A-League match in January 2017. (AAP: David Mariuz)
Investigations have begun into reports from a Western Sydney Wanderers player of being subjected to racist slurs during a match against Adelaide United.
- Western Sydney player Roly Bonevacia alleges an Adelaide United fan made slurs against him
- Bonevacia’s club confirmed they have spoken to him about the alleged slurs “made in Dutch”
- The incident has been reported to Football Federation Australia
Following Wednesday night’s game, Wanderers midfielder Roly Bonevacia tweeted that Adelaide fans should “keep [their] racist comments to [themselves]” and to not “ruin the game”.
The 27-year-old, who was born in the Netherlands, did not elaborate further, but the Wanderers confirmed in a written statement that they had spoken to him about “alleged racial slurs made to him in Dutch” during the second half of the match.
“The club can confirm that discussions have taken place with Football Federation Australia (FFA) and the Adelaide United Football Club regarding this behaviour,” it said.
“Investigations regarding the source of the abuse have commenced.
“The club would like to thank the Adelaide United Football Club and FFA for their immediate support in regards to this incident.
“We all stand together against racism.”
Western Sydney chief executive John Tsatsimas said that, “Roly was obviously disturbed by an incident in the second half,” and “wanted to make a statement in terms of it”.
“We are working with him, Adelaide and the FFA in terms of conducting an investigation as to what really transpired,” Mr Tsatsimas told reporters at Sydney Airport.
“It’s most unfortunate, but it just shows the resilience of the game, that everyone comes together and there’s no acceptance or tolerance of racism in our sport or society in general.
“I’ve got to give credit to all involved, the opposing club Adelaide, (chief nxecutive) Nathan Kosmina and his crew, and also the FFA in terms of coming together.
“Certainly the message has to be uniform and unequivocal, there’s no tolerance, no acceptance, and certainly no space for it in the world, let alone in sport.
“It goes beyond the realms of professional sport, a message needs to be sent out, and hopefully it’s heeded.”
Football Federation Australia investigating
Football Federation Australia said it had “been made aware of an incident” involving a spectator and Bonevacia.
“FFA is working closely with Adelaide United, Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Adelaide Venue Management to gain a complete understanding of what has occurred,” it said.
“FFA condemns any form of racist or non-inclusive remarks and will not tolerate it at any time.”