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Barca Defender Eats Banana
April 28, 2014 1:10 AM   Subscribe

"Barcelona's Dani Alves reacted to having a banana thrown at him during Sunday's dramatic 3-2 win at Villarreal by peeling it and then taking a bite. He was about to take a corner when the banana landed on the pitch". "We have suffered this in Spain for some time," said Alves. "You have to take it with a dose of humour."
Former Barca striker Gary Lineker praised Alves. "Picked it up, peeled it, ate it and proceeded to take the corner," he tweeted. "Top response." The ex-England striker added: "Utterly brilliant reaction from Alves. Treat the racist berk with complete disdain!"
Alves has been a regular target of racist abuse during his 12 years in Spain with both Sevilla and Barcelona.
Dani Alves: “If you don't give it importance, they don't achieve their objective”
posted by marienbad (59 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

 
Video clip
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:16 AM on April 28


Plot twist: banana was spiked with nandrolone.
posted by brokkr at 1:17 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the video clip, Blazecock, even more shocking to actually see it.
posted by marienbad at 1:20 AM on April 28


What a day this is turning into. Meanwhile, in Basketball....
posted by marienbad at 1:25 AM on April 28


I'm always astonished by European football. I mean try throwing ANYTHING onto an American playing field and see if you don't get escorted to the exit by a couple of very large men and tossed out on your ear. It seems so simple. At the first hint of trouble, a goon squad is on the offender before it ever has a chance of getting out of hand. Fans get ejected for making gestures behind home plate. Fans get ejected for yelling at the peanut vendor. You can even get ejected for wearing the wrong jersey. Some of my favourite childhood memories were seeing loud-mouthed Mets fans thrown out of Veterans stadium by security. (It was often the only thing to cheer....)

In America the violence is on the field and not in the stands - as it should be. Football hooliganism is more or less rare in America - despite the otherwise violent culture and fans that are every bit as passionate about their teams. It seems completely opposite in Europe and I've never really gotten my head around this even after two decades of living here.
posted by three blind mice at 2:01 AM on April 28 [10 favorites]


three blind mice: " You can even get ejected for wearing the wrong jersey."

That seems reasonable to you?
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 2:14 AM on April 28 [9 favorites]


European football is an outlet for tribal identity as much as anything. The difference btw the family oriented show business that is American sport and this is astounding.

But what I find most mysterious, as an American from Chicago via DC and living in Europe (and therefore consider myself experienced in varieties of racism), is how some of the most virulently racist people can be Spanish or Italian, people who are distinctly mixed blooded, with strains of Arabic and North African in the mix, or Eastern Europeans, who have so little experience of actual black people in their lives and amongst themselves that their notions of racial superiority are purely theoretical.

Alves has a quick wit, check out the speed of his reaction
posted by C.A.S. at 2:18 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


I don't really like Alves as a player but I must admit that he reacted really well. Watch out Neymars reaction on twitter in support of Alves. He has started some sort of campaign in twitter. #todosomosmacacos or we are all monkeys.
posted by LetsKa at 2:19 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


In America the violence is on the field and not in the stands

...and, if I recall over the years, on the streets among the trashed and burning cars if games don't go the right way...
posted by Jimbob at 2:30 AM on April 28 [4 favorites]


I'm always astonished by European football.

One thing to help unconfuse yourself is by treating each country in Europe as separate entities. The cultures differ vastly enough. This sort of behaviour would be treated with disdain and ejection of the offending fan at a game in Britain.

I guess on the flipside: how can people get so passionate at political rallies in the US? So much fluff and false hope! At least with sports events you know what's mostly happening.
posted by bumcivilian at 2:47 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


John Barnes also knew how to respond to bananas - treat them like you'd treat a racist.

three blind mice: " You can even get ejected for wearing the wrong jersey."

See if you wore the wrong jersey to a European football match, there's no way you'd even get into the stadium*. And in England at least, throwing stuff will definitely get you into trouble, if you're identified. Hell, you could easily get thrown out for standing up, if you refuse to sit down again. Running onto the field will see you banned from the stadium and potentially jailed. Some countries are definitely worse than others [on preview, what bumcivilian said] (and meanwhile, in Dallas....in England, you would never get a beer bottle into the stadium, and you aren't even allowed to drink alcohol in sight of the pitch)

*I realise your example is kinda different, but there's no way you could do the equivalent of what that guy does.
posted by Pink Frost at 2:53 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


It's a good job Alves took the abuse with such good grace otherwise UEFA would've had to respond.
By fining English clubs.
posted by fullerine at 3:08 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


I'm always astonished by European football.

I would be too, there is no such thing. The world of professional soccer is comprised of independent national leagues. The approach to the game and the nature of the fans are different in Spain compared to the UK or Germany or the South American nations ... We all have different national laws too.
posted by epo at 3:12 AM on April 28 [5 favorites]


...some of the most virulently racist people can be Spanish or Italian, people who are distinctly mixed blooded, with strains of Arabic and North African in the mix, or Eastern Europeans, who have so little experience of actual black people in their lives and amongst themselves that their notions of racial superiority are purely theoretical.

This is not really surprising: lack of familiarity allows more room for irrational beliefs, if only because one does not have easy access to counterexamples. Not having any significant black population also minimizes the negative consequences of holding racist beliefs - nobody is going to call you out on it.
posted by Dr Dracator at 3:17 AM on April 28


When Paul Gascoigne was young and still carried a bit of puppy fat, fans would throw Mars Bars at him when he was playing.
posted by devious truculent and unreliable at 3:18 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


There's an Irvine Welsh story where a game is descending into hooliganism until someone throws a bottle on the pitch, and George Best picks it up and pretends to drink it. Not sure how true that is...but here's a video of someone throwing a pig's head at Luis Figo....
posted by Pink Frost at 3:24 AM on April 28


> You can even get ejected for wearing the wrong jersey.

The guy must have been straight-up trolling to attend a game dressed like that, but he was escorted out of the stadium for his own protection as much as to get the other fans' attention focused back onto the field.

Otherwise that guy would have gotten a beat-down you'd only expect at a Phillies home game.
posted by ardgedee at 3:50 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


This sort of behaviour would be treated with disdain and ejection of the offending fan at a game in Britain.


football fans charged with yid chants

secret filming of rascist, homophobic, antisemitic abuse at premiership football matches

"Lennon received death threats as long ago as 2002, before he was due to captain Northern Ireland for the first time.

Raised as a Catholic, he had reportedly said he wanted to play for a united Irish team, but never represented his country again after the threats."

Neil Lennon abuse
posted by C.A.S. at 3:52 AM on April 28


Meanwhile last week in Rotterdam, Ajax was playing PEC Zwolle in the Dutch Cup, were 0-1 up, then their own fans started throwing firework bombs at their goalie.

Ajax lost 5-1 after the game restarted.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:54 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


What a day this is turning into. Meanwhile, in Basketball....

meanwhile, one of the best responses to the ClipperGate I've seen

fans respond to Clippers owner
posted by C.A.S. at 3:56 AM on April 28 [4 favorites]


football fans charged with yid chants

Ironically Spurs fans shouting yid, as Spurs identifies as a Jewish club (like Ajax and several others in Europe) and (like Ajax and several others in Europe) some of its more dimbulbed supporters take great pride in calling themselves yids, even while actually Jewish supporters of same find it less than amusing.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:58 AM on April 28


At the first hint of trouble, a goon squad is on the offender before it ever has a chance of getting out of hand.

No surprisingly, considering the supine and reflexively authoritarian attitude of the average American.
posted by MartinWisse at 4:02 AM on April 28


from C.A.S. link above (secret filming of rascist, homophobic, antisemitic abuse at premiership football matches) :

"and homophobic chanting at games involving Brighton."

That is almost surreal, as it is aimed at the place itself, not an actual player.

The Neil Lennon stuff is shocking, bullets and parcel bombs through the post?

I personally cannot stand Ballotelli, but this is way beyond the pail: Italian fans booed Ballotelli when he was playing for Italy.
posted by marienbad at 4:05 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


"Ajax lost 5-1 after the game restarted."

Man that goal by the No 12 is a fucking peach!! Is that the manager who addresses the crowd? What does he say?
posted by marienbad at 4:09 AM on April 28


Here are some fans of Internazionale di Milano having managed to smuggle an entire Vespa scooter into the stadium, which they then throw around the terraces and eventually set on fire.
posted by colie at 4:17 AM on April 28


Its not just ironic Spurs self-identifying 'yids", its the opponent supporters as well. And WTF?

No surprisingly, considering the supine and reflexively authoritarian attitude of the average American.

Please justify this kind of uninformed sweeping generalisation. In the US, sports fans don't have to submit to being contained, steered down corridors and cordoned off from opposing fans by police dressed in riot gear, and on horseback. Yet football fans around the world treat this as ordinary game day procedure.

The rise in support for the Golden Dawn in Greece and the rise in power of the far-right in Hungary (including aggressive anti-democratic changes in law), both EU countries, means I would not be too smug about European attitudes towards authority.
posted by C.A.S. at 4:25 AM on April 28 [6 favorites]


Marienbad, that's Edwin van der Sar, a former Ajax (and Man U/Fulham) keeper, not the manager of the club. Apparently he's now the director of marketing there? Anyway, here's an admittedly rough translation of his remarks from Reddit.

Stop with this shit.
You are harming the club, yourself as fans and the players.
We like to win this trophy as a club.
With this nonsense we won't get anywhere.
Stop throwing fireworks at the field, it's dangerous and otherwise our club is fucked.
Have a party with everyone, c'mon.
Forgot one thing : if it happens again, the match is over and we lose this trophy.

I'm not sure if the cursing is as strong as indicated, as most people seem to think that 'shit' is better translated as 'crap'.
posted by suckerpunch at 4:34 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


Hey, free banana.
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:39 AM on April 28 [3 favorites]


Well Hooray for Dani Alves!
posted by Mister_A at 4:50 AM on April 28


Jimbob: "In America the violence is on the field and not in the stands

...and, if I recall over the years, on the streets among the trashed and burning cars if games don't go the right way...
"

Nonsense. Americans only riot after a game if it did go the right way.
posted by octothorpe at 4:52 AM on April 28 [4 favorites]


I'm always astonished by European football. I mean try throwing ANYTHING onto an American playing field and see if you don't get escorted to the exit by a couple of very large men and tossed out on your ear.

In Spain, there is this synergy between soccer clubs and neo-nazi supporter associations that flares up in things like that banana throw or neonazis taking pictures with soccer stars holding Francoist flags. These neo-nazis are tolerated and even coddled by the clubs (with free tickets and such) because they're the most vocal supporters.

(There are also some far left-wing supporter associations, too).
posted by sukeban at 4:54 AM on April 28


Rome team Lazio have a full-blown fascist supporters' section, which until quite recently displayed a banner addressing their rivals AS Roma with the slogan 'Team of Blacks; Crowd of Jews.'
posted by colie at 5:07 AM on April 28


hahaha man, that clip is great. I'm in awe of that reaction. Somehow the casualness with which he does it makes it better than I'd imagined it.
posted by Fists O'Fury at 5:09 AM on April 28


I'm not sure if the cursing is as strong as indicated, as most people seem to think that 'shit' is better translated as 'crap'.

Neither shit nor fuck are particularly strong Dutch swear words, nor is the Dutch equivalent of cunt, kut. It's only when the diseases (teringlijer, kankerhond; krijg de pest) come out that you can tell a Dutch person really is angry|upset|aggressive.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:15 AM on April 28 [8 favorites]


From a sidebar on the article:

"The Brazilian took the racist gesture on the chin, nonchalantly picking up the fruit, peeling it and taking a bite. Alves had the last laugh as Barca roared back from 2-0 down to win."


LOL, burn.
posted by jquinby at 5:17 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


Some of my favourite childhood memories were seeing loud-mouthed Mets fans thrown out of Veterans stadium by security.

Ah.. The Mets at the Vets... Good times. Good times.

I came of age in those Broad St. parking lots...

Otherwise that guy would have gotten a beat-down you'd only expect at a Phillies home game.


Also, don't wear a Ranger's jersey to the Spectrum.
posted by mikelieman at 5:17 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


throwing stuff will definitely get you into trouble, if you're identified
IF you're identified !? Really ? IF ?
The entire stadium should be covered by cameras. It should be easy to identify.

There is no possible way you could throw something at an American sporting event, and not be identified. In the mid-1990s, the NY Giants had a bad incident of snowballs and ice being thrown at the opposing team. I am talking hundreds of snowballs. And the got EVERYONE. Every single person was hauled into court. They got fined, revoked their season tickets, and banned from the stadium for life.

That seems reasonable to you?
If you go into Yankee stadium wearing Red Sox gear, then you are looking for a fight. For everyone's safety, they should not even let that person into the stadium.
posted by Flood at 5:21 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]




This sort of behaviour would be treated with disdain and ejection of the offending fan at a game in Britain.

Oh man, this is laughable.

Just perusing the list of incidents that folks have bothered listing on Wikipedia, you can see that this isn't true. There are even other banana incidents.

Maybe I'm just exposed to it more often as someone who lives with a Spurs fan, and Spurs seem to get the worst of it because they self identify as "the yids".

Wikipedia: Racism in Association Football in England
posted by tofu_crouton at 5:43 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


He has started some sort of campaign in twitter. #todosomosmacacos or we are all monkeys.

There was a Republican candidate a couple of years ago who could have used that hash tag, too.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:48 AM on April 28


"Maybe I'm just exposed to it more often as someone who lives with a Spurs fan"

I think Spurs have done alright under Tim Sherwood...
posted by marienbad at 6:01 AM on April 28


If you go into Yankee stadium wearing Red Sox gear, then you are looking for a fight. For everyone's safety, they should not even let that person into the stadium.

Cunningly, the NY Daily News is trying to lure Sox fans to their doom, with fables of grudging tolerance and safety. I personally wouldn't sit near Section 203, but the Creatures aren't what they used to be.
posted by zamboni at 6:07 AM on April 28


On a lighter note (and yes, its a Nike advert) : Nike Football: Winner Stays. ft. Ronaldo, Neymar Jr., Rooney, Ibrahimović, Iniesta & more
posted by marienbad at 7:05 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


"and homophobic chanting at games involving Brighton."


It is said that the classic response from Brighton & Hove Albion supporters to chants of "You're just a bunch of faggots from a seaside town!" is "It's a city!"





I personally cannot stand Ballotelli, but this is way beyond the pail: Italian fans booed Ballotelli when he was playing for Italy.


I have always maintained that Mario Ballotelli should never be verbally abused for being black. He should be verbally abused for being Mario Ballotelli.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:03 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


He should be verbally abused for being Mario Ballotelli.
Ahh, I think this is another one of those transatlantic misconceptions.
Over here we say "he should be given the freedom of every city on Earth for being Mario Ballotelli".
posted by fullerine at 8:36 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]


He'll only just set off fireworks in all your bathrooms.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:43 AM on April 28


It is said that the classic response from Brighton & Hove Albion supporters to chants of "You're just a bunch of faggots from a seaside town!" is "It's a city!"

classic and perfect.
posted by marienbad at 8:48 AM on April 28 [1 favorite]


Over here we say "he should be given the freedom of every city on Earth for being Mario Ballotelli".

This
posted by josher71 at 9:14 AM on April 28


No surprisingly, considering the supine and reflexively authoritarian attitude of the average American.

Let me get this straight: preventing violence and harassment in the stands during sports matches is a sign of a "supine and reflexively authoritarian attitude"?

I'm glad Europeans have moved beyond primitive American ideas of stadium security and crowd control so that racists and fascists (yes, as others note above, literal, actual Fascists) are free to yell slurs and throw shit on the field at minority players. If only Americans weren't such spineless bootlickers we too could revel in sports bigotry!
posted by Sangermaine at 9:57 AM on April 28 [2 favorites]




Flood: IF you're identified !? Really ? IF ?
The entire stadium should be covered by cameras. It should be easy to identify.


Oh, it is. I would assume that people throwing stuff would be easily identified; I was just hedging my bets a bit because I don't have any first-hand evidence one way or the other.

CAS: Its not just ironic Spurs self-identifying 'yids", its the opponent supporters as well. And WTF?

True, though the guys in the linked article were almost certainly Spurs fans (the opposing team was from Moldova and the fans charged had English names and London addresses). And most of the stadium would have been chanting 'Yid army'. I have no problem with Spurs fans calling themselves Yids (and neither do the vast majority of Spurs fans). The most vocal criticism of it comes from David Baddiel, who should really look at the actual anti-Semitism coming from his own club...
posted by Pink Frost at 12:33 PM on April 28


Football hooliganism is more or less rare in America

In the stadium, sure. PSU commons on game night though... oh boy.
posted by Slackermagee at 12:36 PM on April 28


If you go into Yankee stadium wearing Red Sox gear, then you are looking for a fight. For everyone's safety, they should not even let that person into the stadium.

I was at a Sox/Yankee game at Fenway last week, there were plenty of people wearing Yankee gear and no fights or violence that I noticed or heard about.
posted by D_I at 12:47 PM on April 28


the supporter has been banned for life from the stadium. He was immediately identified by those in the seats around him. I seat at Estadio Vicente Calderón every other weekend to watch Atletico de Madrid play. And at any sign of trouble, supporters will do the same; there's cctv anyway, but it's the norm to point to the culprit.

There's racism in Spain much as in anywhere else; I'd say the average football supporter is more aware of this problem than the average Spaniard. The banana thrower declared he was "ashamed" and that he is "not racist", that it was a spur of the moment thing. And that's the problem, he doesn't even realize he *is* a racist. We do not realize it. There is this casual jokey kind of racism in Spain that's hard to erradicate because "we are not racists". We might have less opportunities to discriminate because we are new to diversity (let's see what happens when second or third generation southamericans, pakistanis or morrocans massively knock at the upper echelon's door), but just bring up the gitanos. "oh, but that's different because they don't want to integrate".

You can roll your eyes now.

re: jerseys, it really depends on the team. I wouldn't informally wear a Real Madrid jersey to the Atletico arena, but that's just me.
posted by valdesm at 1:03 PM on April 28 [5 favorites]


Sadly it was a previously arranged idea conceived in an ad agency. Neymar was going to do it, but "if Daniel Alves did, wonderful too". (link in portuguese)
posted by ig at 9:40 PM on April 28 [2 favorites]


FC Barcelona release pic of multiple stars eating bananas, including Balotelli, Luis Suarez, Coutinho, Lewandowski, Lucas Moura, Marcos Senna, Hulk, Bebeto, and Roberto Carlos, and the Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, alongside the Italian National Coach Cesare Prandelli.
posted by marienbad at 8:06 AM on April 29


"Sadly it was a previously arranged idea conceived in an ad agency. Neymar was going to do it, but "if Daniel Alves did, wonderful too". (link in portuguese)"

So what? The reaction this has caused and the waves of support for Alves are fantastic. Racism in sport won't be defeated overnight, and every little step in the right direction helps. Surely this is one of them?
posted by marienbad at 8:08 AM on April 29


“If you don't give it importance, they don't achieve their objective”


I wish this attitude were more prevalent. Why put weapons in the hands of your enemies? Mockery is so much more effective than whiney, petulant outrage.
posted by umberto at 9:33 AM on April 29




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