Barcelona have condemned their first-team player James Naji for racist abuse ahead of the final against Real Madrid.
Barcelona basketball team has condemned the racist abuse of Nigerian player James Nazir during the Spanish championship final win over bitter rivals Real Madrid.
Tuesday’s incident comes as the Spanish sport of wrestling has been rocked by a global spate of racism aimed at Real Madrid’s Brazilian soccer star Vinicius Junior. The 22-year-old Brazilian forward called out racist abuse in the Spanish Football League in May, which he was. Subject since moving to Spain five years ago.
On Wednesday, it’s Spanish basketball’s turn.
“Barcelona condemns the racist insults committed by first-team basketball player James Nazir before three matches in the final,” the team said in a statement on Wednesday.
“The club expects a strong response from ACB [Spanish basketball league] Against any racial or verbal abuse.”
Pictures of the Barcelona team bus arriving at Madrid’s Wyzinc Center, where Tuesday’s match took place, showed several Madrid fans insulting Barcelona players.
According to local media, the Nazi was the target of racist insults.
“I want to talk about what happened with James Nazir here. I think it’s sad. I’ve heard a lot about Vinicius, and now we have to talk about what’s going on,” Barcelona basketball coach Sarunas Jasikevicius said afterwards.
“It has to stop now. It doesn’t fit the values of Real Madrid and its supporters, and we have to be very angry about it,” he said.
Nigerian online media outlet Pulse Sports said the 18-year-old Nanaji played just eight minutes and 35 seconds in the final but played a “key role” in his team’s victory.
In another racist incident similar to Vinicius Jr., 18-year-old Nigerian star James Naji, who plays for Barcelona, was subjected to racial abuse from Real Madrid fans. https://t.co/fslanJr664
— Pulse Sports Nigeria (@PulseSportsNG) June 21, 2023
Barcelona beat Real Madrid 93-82 on Tuesday to win the club’s 20th Spanish league title.