TIEMOUE BAKAYOKO was racially abused during AC Milan’s Coppa Italia semi-final last night.
The midfielder, on loan at the San Siro from Chelsea this season, was targeted by Lazio fans before, during and after the clash.
Ahead of the game, a group of around 50 Lazio ultras held up a banner that read “Honour to Benito Mussolini” – the former fascist Italian dictator – in the city of Milan and made fascist salutes as tensions built before the game.
And songs of “this banana is for Bakayoko” were then reportedly heard both in the city and in the stadium before kick-off.
Lazio supporters were angry with Bakayoko and his AC Milan team-mate Franck Kessie after they paraded Francesco Acerbi’s shirt like a trophy earlier in April.
The pair were jeered and whistled throughout the semi-final yesterday.
According to Football Italia, Lazio supporters then smuggled a number of inflatable bananas into the San Siro.
The chanting aimed at Bakayako then continued throughout the warm-up, during the match and then in the streets after full-time.
AC Milan’s stadium announcer read out a message warning fans that the game would be suspended if the racist chanting continued – but the group of Lazio supporters responding with yet more disgusting songs.
Football Italia updated followers on Twitter throughout the evening and wrote: “Lazio fans are continuing to chant racist abuse towards Tiemoue Bakayoko outside the gates of San Siro.”
SS Lazio clearly distance ourselves from behaviour and manifestations that do not in any way correspond to the values of sport.
They added: “The tension is escalating ahead of the Coppa Italia semi-final against ACMilan, as Lazio ultras are already aiming racist chants at Tiemoue Bakayoko.
“Speaker reads out message warning game will be suspended if racist chants continue. Lazio ultras respond by chanting about bananas.
“Italian rules state the referee cannot stop play for racist abuse. Only the person in charge of public safety and security can do that. Their main priority is preventing a riot, so very unlikely to stop play.”
And as suggested, the game was not halted – and Joaquin Correa’s goal secured a 1-0 aggregate win to put Lazio into their fourth final in seven years.
Lazio released a statement last night that said: “SS Lazio clearly distance ourselves from behaviour and manifestations that do not in any way correspond to the values of sport that this club has promoted and supported for 119 years.
“Lazio also reject and contest the simplistic tendency of the media to consider the entire Lazio fanbase responsible for the actions of a few isolated elements, for motivation that has nothing to do with passion for sport.
“The club has always fought for the respect of law and fairness in behaviour.”
An AC Milan supporters account on Twitter uploaded a video of Lazio fans after the game and called on the Italian FA to take action.
@TheMilanBible wrote: “Lazio fans even after the game are chanting racist chants aimed towards Bakayoko: ‘This banana is for you Bakayoko.’
“They chanted this before the game, during the game and now after the game. Stop pretending like you can’t hear this, @FIGC.”
It is understood 19 Lazio fans and three Inter Milan supporters were identified and stopped by police over the Mussolini banner.
On April 2, Juventus forward Moise Kean was targeted with racist abuse by Cagliari fans during the Serie A clash.
His team-mate Leonardo Bonucci incredibly claimed the teenager was “50-50 to blame” for the abuse following his celebration but Kean was backed by the likes of Raheem Sterling and many others.
And Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly was abused during their game against Inter Milan in December.
Most read in football
He was sent off for sarcastically applauding the referee amid the taunts directed at him and took to Twitter.
Koulibaly wrote: “I’m sorry about the defeat and especially to have left my brothers! But I am proud of the colour of my skin. Of being French, Senegalese, Neapolitan: a man.”
An investigation was also launched following Napoli’s Europa League defeat at Arsenal this month, with a video shared on social media appearing to show Koulibaly targeted once again.