Alves: Tougher action on racism

Dani Alves has implored the Spanish football authorities to introduce harsher penalties for tackling racism in the sport.

The Brazilian was the subject of monkey chants during Barcelona’s 1-1 draw at Real Madrid on Wednesday night.

Following on from his posting on social networking site Twitter, the 29-year-old spoke to the assembled media on the issue.

“I know that we’re fighting against this type of behaviour, but for me it’s a lost war. I’ve been playing in Spain for 10 years and it’s been going on since the first day,” lamented Alves.

“I did not consider leaving the field, but it is annoying. It happens not only at the Bernabeu, but in other fields that we go to, it is a shame.

 “The Bernabeu is not the place where I have felt most attacked. There have been worse. It generally happens in Spain. I already experienced it with Sevilla. Until action is taken, nothing will be fixed.

 “Drastic measures need to be taken. For example, clubs should be drastically penalised – something beyond [the current] €1,000 or €2,000 fine, which is nothing for clubs that are so rich.

“We need to go further. In England this doesn’t happen and when it does, the penalty is exemplary.”

The player has endured an indifferent first half to the season thanks in part to injury, but made clear that he does not feel his performances on the pitch are affected.

“Of all the injuries that I’ve had in my career I’ve never had one hit me at the start of the season. I’ve not lost confidence in my game.

“Since we began the season I have wanted to be at the same level as the team, bringing my all, but unfortunately the injuries would not let me.

“I’ve always tried to be good enough to play for this team and I think I’m managing to do that well.

“I’m not too concerned with what people think of me. I’m doing what I enjoy and those that are close to me know how much this profession means to me.”

Alves reflected that as a team, Barca left the Bernabeu at the end of their Copa del Rey semi-final first leg with regrets.

“We left the Bernabeu unhappy because of the circumstances of the game. We didn’t take advantage of the chances we had and now the tie will be decided at the Camp Nou. It’s a marvellous opportunity for us. We deserved to win and return from Madrid with a better result.

“Madrid happy with the result? Barca are the team to beat. Everyone wants to play he game of their life against us. The only thing I’m concerned with is playing a good return leg and progress to the final.

The full-back was asked of Madrid’s approach to facing Barcelona.

“Since I have been here Real Madrid have always tried to play beyond the rules of the game. We play football. I don’t think we can do anything in this regard.

“I still don’t understand how Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t booked. If that play had been reversed I would have been given a red card. But, of course, it seems as though we can’t have a Clasico without Cristiano.

“But, whatever happens on the pitch stays on the pitch, beyond dirty play or any attempt to provoke.”

Tags Alves Dani Alves LFP Racism RFEF Santiago Bernabeu