Arsenal launch investigation into racism directed towards Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly

Arsenal have this morning confirmed that the club have opened a formal investigation into an alleged incident of racial abuse of Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly.

Arsenal 2-0 Napoli

Unai Emery’s men welcomed Serie A outfit Napoli to the Emirates last night, for the first-leg of their Europa League quarter-final tie.

The Gunners headed into proceedings hoping for an immediate bounce-back performance, having seen their superb recent run of form brought to a firm end at Goodison Park versus Everton last weekend.

Alexandre Lacazette

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – APRIL 07: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal (R) challenges for the ball with Seamus Coleman of Everton during the Premier League match between Everton FC and Arsenal FC at Goodison Park on April 07, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

And, when all was said and done in North London, bounce back was precisely what Arsenal managed, courtesy of a 2-0 win.

After Aaron Ramsey found the net with a quarter of an hour gone, Lucas Torreira’s deflected effort 10 minutes later rounded out the day’s scoring to send the hosts into next week’s 2nd-leg in firm control of the tie.

‘Utterly condemn’

However, an otherwise perfect night for Arsenal has since been soured somewhat, by an alleged incident of racism on the part of one of the club’s fans.

A member of the home crowd at the Emirates is said to have posted a clip to social media, during which Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly was racially abused.

As such, on the back of these claims, Arsenal have this morning confirmed that a formal investigation has been opened into the incident.

As per the club’s official statement:

‘We utterly condemn use of this type of racist language.’

‘We have launched an investigation to identify the culprit.’

‘We operate a zero-tolerance approach and anyone behaving like this is not welcome at Arsenal and will be banned from matches.’

‘We have an extremely diverse community of fans who are all part of the Arsenal family and such incidents are rare at the Emirates Stadium.’

‘We encourage supporters to report any incidents as they happen to stewards or via our matchday alert service.’

Via the BBC

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