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They Did What?: 

Barcelona’s Dani Alves has the best response to racist taunts

Barcelona defender Dani Alves managed to keep his cool despite racist taunts, casually eating a banana thrown on to the pitch during last night’s victory over Villarreal.

The Brazilian full-back was preparing to take a corner kick when the fruit was launched in his direction from the stands, but Alves plucked it from the ground before nonchalantly peeling and eating it.

He then whipped in a cross and continued the match, which Barcelona went on to win 3-2.

After the game, Dani Alves commented: “I don’t know who threw the banana but I want to thank him. It gave me the energy to put two more crosses in for our goals.”

While the player’s composed reaction is to be applauded, it’s worth noting that this is not an isolated incident, but part of a larger pattern of similar abuse in European soccer. Although the sport’s governing body FIFA now adopts a strict policy against racist incidents, it’s often difficult to track down and prosecute the culprits.

“We have suffered this in Spain for some time,” Alves added. “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 [the racists] don’t achieve their objective.”

To watch the incident in full, click play on the video below.

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