While Lilian Thuram urges white players to step up against racism, Marco Materazzi says the former France defender never left the stadium when fans insulted his mum.
Thuram, a former French defender and an activist against racism, spoke to La Gazzetta dello Sport’s event Festival dello Sport.
“Don’t think like a black man don’t think like a white man, don’t think like a French or a Senegalese. Think like a human being,” he said.
“If we want to be more intelligent, start saying things as they are. There is racism, sexism and homophobia in Italy, it doesn’t mean I don’t love Italy, it means I want to change things.”
There have been several cases of racist abuse in Serie A stadiums since the start of the season. Dusan Vlahovic, Franck Kessié, Tiemeoue Bakayoko and Kalidou Koulibaly have all been targeted by racial insults.
Thuram has created a foundation and is taking public positions on several issues related to racism and equality. He is urging white players to step up against racism and do something concrete when black players are racially abused.
“White players have an important role in this, they should make their voice heard,” Thuram said in an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport last month.
“A non-white person must go beyond himself to get to the top. Football is politic, economy and capitalism.”
Former Italy defender Marco Materazzi took the stage one day after Thuram but didn’t seem to share the same view as the ex Juve and Parma star.
“I agree with Thuram, I am against racism, but I never saw Thuram leave the pitch when they were signing ‘Materazzi son of a b****’
“It’s a matter of education, for the white, the black and the son of a b****.’