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Dhaka Tribune

Alves eats banana in response to racist taunt

Update : 28 Apr 2014, 03:30 PM

Barcelona defender Dani Alves responded to a racist taunt when a banana landed at his feet during Sunday's game at Villarreal by picking up the fruit, peeling and then eating it before proceeding to take a corner kick.

Alves said after the match that humor is the best way to combat racism in sports.

"I don't know who it was, but thanks to whoever threw the banana, the potassium gave me the energy for the two crosses which led to a goal," he told reporters after the match.

"We have suffered this in Spain for some time," Alves said. "You have to take it with a dose of humor. We aren't going to change things easily.

"If you don't give it importance, they don't achieve their objective."

Alves has often been subjected to racist taunts and called fighting racism "a lost war" in January 2013, after segments of Real Madrid's fans abused him with monkey chants during a match.

During the match, Alves had already played a key part in sparking his team's 3-2 comeback when his off-target shot was turned into an own goal Gabriel Armando in the 65th.

And shortly after the banana incident, Alves launched a cross that Mateo Musacchio headed into his own goal in the 78th before Lionel Messi scored Barcelona's winner.

Team-mate Neymar immediately gave his support to Alves as well as had his own joke at the racists expense, posting on his Facebook profile the caption “#weareallmonkeys” along with a picture of himself and his son with a banana.

Napoli’s Dries Merthens also backed the Brazilian defender, tweeting a picture of himself eating one along with the message “Great reaction by Dani Alves. Respect!”

And Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero posted a picture on his Twitter account of himself alongside his colleague Marta of the pair also eating a banana.

Former England striker turned Match off the Day presenter Gary Lineker said that Alves response was “Utterley brilliant”, while Piers Morgan also had his say, claiming it was the “Greatest response to racism you will ever see”.

And finally, the Evening Standard’s Patrick Barclay took a more reserved approach on Alves’ potassium boost, saying: “Ten out of ten for Dani Alves with the banana. But it’s something you can only do once.”

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