Pierre Webo: Istanbul Basaksehir assistant coach says 8 December will be significant date in racism fight

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Istanbul Basaksehir assistant coach Pierre Webo says 8 December 2020 will be a significant date in football’s fight against racism.

Basaksehir and Paris St-Germain players walked off the pitch during Tuesday’s Champions League game after the fourth official was accused of referring to Webo by the colour of his skin.

Webo, 38, said the days since have been the “most difficult” of his career.

He added he needed help from a doctor to sleep on the night of the incident.

Former Cameroon international Webo has accused the fourth official, Sebastian Coltescu, of disrespecting him by unnecessarily referring to the colour of his skin, instead of referring to him by name.

He told BBC Sport: “In my opinion, 8 December, there is a before and after. It will be remembered.”

The game, which was abandoned after 14 minutes with the score 0-0, restarted on Wednesday with a new team of officials.

Both sets of players and the officials wore ‘no to racism’ T-shirts in the warm-up, with anti-racism banners in the stands, and took a knee around the centre circle before kick-off.

Webo, who had been sent off in the incident, was allowed to take his place on the away bench, with his red card suspended while Uefa investigates.

Asked if players would walk off again, he said: “We showed that we will do that. It’s not the ref who is going to stop it, it’s the players.

“As I said, we are now going to have the day before 8 December, and the day after.”

Webo, who spent eight years of his playing career in La Liga with Osasuna and Mallorca, said he had received lots of support from both inside and outside football, as well as some abusive messages from Romania – where original fourth official Coltescu is from.

“I don’t want people to focus on me because of this, it will be a shame if I’m remembered for this,” Webo said. “I’m ashamed of it to be truthful.

“These two or three days have been the most difficult of my career.”

Uefa says it is gathering evidence but does not expect an outcome before Christmas.

The Romanian officials in charge of the abandoned Champions League game have been stood down from their domestic league matches until Uefa’s disciplinary case into the match has been heard.

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Source – BBC News – Africa

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