Clemente denies racism slur16 January 2006

Spanish coach Javier Clemente has denied that comments he made about Cameroon striker Samuel Eto’o were racist. The manager of Athletic Bilbao criticised Eto’o after it appeared he spat at Bilbao defender Unai Exposito during a league match.

Clemente was accused of racially abusing Eto’o after describing the spitting incident as “Something that people who had just come down from the trees did.” Clemente insists that the insults were not targeted at Eto’o. He went on to say, “I don't make any distinction between the behaviour of black and white people. If it had been Carles Puyol who had done it I would have said exactly the same thing. When I talked about people who had just come down from the trees I mean everyone, be they white, black or yellow…”