Round13ofthePeruvianpremierleaguesawtwoofitstop10clubscontestamatchdedicatedtothefightagainstracism. TheencounterbetweenSportingCristalandCiencianodelCusco,onSaturday 15November,markedtheclubs’commitmenttostampoutdiscriminatorybehaviourinsidefootballstadiums.
During the warm up, players of both teams wore t-shirts featuring awareness raising slogans and before the kick-off the team’s captains Carlos Lobatón (Sporting Cristal) and Santiago Acasiete (Cienciano) read anti-discrimination messages.
Videos featuring Cristal leading players reading anti-racism messages and speaking about cultural diversity were also screened and informative material about racism in football and sanctions distributed among the spectators.
After the final whistle Rocío Muñoz, the Culture Ministry’s General Director of Intercultural Citizenship, awarded the cup to the captain of the Sky Blues team, as Sporting Cristal is commonly known, for the victory over Cienciano for 2-0.
The initiative was organised by the Peruvian Culture Ministry’s campaign ‘Ponte Alerta Contra el Racismo en el Fútbol‘, first launched in 2013, as a social response to discrimination in Peru’s football.
In 2014, the campaign has been backed up by several Peruvian football authorities, including the Player’s Union and the Professional Football league, along with the premier league clubs Alianza Lima, Sporting Cristal and Universitario Deportes.
Since the beginning of the year several incidents have marred matches of in the country.
Last month, Sporting Cristal were ordered partially closure of their stadium for one match and fined €2,077, after their fans racially abused Cesar Vallejo Panamanian striker Luis Tejada.