Altidore Handles Racism In His Own Way

It comes to no surprise how much we Americans love this game and love our players who are making themselves better across the Atlantic, south of the border, or in South America. We try to follow their process through the internet and try to discuss the positives or the negatives of their performance.


Altidore, the subject of racist actions in Holland

But when an unfortunate situation comes up, you would assume it’s a nasty injury that could sideline them for a couple of months. Sadly that’s not the case when it came to Jozy Altidore in a KNVB Dutch Cup match on the road for his AZ Ailkmaar side against FC Den Bosch.

As we all know UEFA & FIFA are in a fight against supporters of certain clubs for a culture of open racism against players who are not of their supporters’ “preferred” skin color. We have seen banana’s thrown on the pitch or the vocal reaction of monkey chants from the stands. And sadly it found Altidore this time.

Even though referee Reinold Wiedemeijer decided to stop the match, a level headed Altidore and his side wanted to continue and so it did. AZ won the Quarterfinal Cup tie by a final of five goals to nil, and on that night Altidore was shown to be the better man.

A fantastic gesture was made by Den Bosch apologizing to Altidore and giving a promise that this will never happen again. They said they will find those responsible for their actions will be properly punished. But we can’t forget about what happened to Kevin “Prince” Boatang of AC Milan and how he reacted to the same treatment he received in a friendly against a lower tiered Italian club.

In my opinion both men were right on how they handled it. Maybe this is the first time we are hearing about Altidore being racially abused, but for Boateng I would have to say he has heard these chants for far too long. Maybe FIFA President Sepp Blatter doesn’t want players to march off the pitch in anger, but let’s be honest: when will FIFA truly step in and make those supporters pay for their actions?

Watching on Youtube the great Roberto Carlos who finished his playing career in Russia also was abused in a league match when supporters threw bananas on the field. The honorable Brazilian cried walking off the pitch with his shin guards in his hands. A World Cup Champion being racially abused for the color of his skin was disgusting and utterly horrendous.

But sadly the problem is assessing proper punishment to those supporters or those groups who intentionally make these stupid chants and acts, to disgrace this game we love so much. I don’t doubt that there are still racists living here in the USA, but so far we haven’t seen nor heard them in sporting venues. I would think they’d have been banned for a long time ago had it happened.

But the only time they have ever come to light was during the 70’s in Major League Baseball as “Hammering” Hank Aaron was about to break Babe Ruth’s Home Run Career Record as a member of the Atlanta Braves. When he hit the record breaker over the left-center field wall, all the citizens of Atlanta and of the United States cheered him for his feat.

It was a good showing by Altidore to rise above the hatred and the stupidity, and also admirable by Den Bosch to respond quickly to the problems at hand. But once again what will FIFA & UEFA do to truly put an end to these racists chants and actions by a bunch of knuckleheads who in my mind were sore losers being down by three goals before the half?

5 thoughts on “Altidore Handles Racism In His Own Way”

  1. FIFA is a joke.

    I don’t think that anyone can convince me that these incidences aren’t a reflection of the society as a whole. Not that every member is a racist, but that overall it is accepted.

    If I went to a game in Seattle where someone did that…or even a large group did that. They would be pointed out… everyone. For the most part that is true throughout the US, but doesn’t appear to be true in much of the world. One can only hope that Altidore and others are the Jackie Robinson’s of those areas, who through taking abuse get the discussion going on what that region wants to be.

    If someone is racist in Seattle, they have to hide where cowardly maggots belong. We have interracial marriages everywhere, and a black president. The rest of the world needs to follow the right type of society.

  2. These things are always complicated though, in America we had lynching and fear tactics for far too long, and the reaction to Obama’s reelection on U Miss campus was close to a race riot. And in Colorado, people are still racist about Mexican Americans, including openly so at High School sports stadiums. Still I agree that in professional arena (this was a 2nd division team) this would never be tolorated, even though, weirdly, we have major teams called the “Indians” and the “Redskins”. I’m not sure that FIFA can monitor down to every country’s 2nd division level, this seems like it has to be done by the national association. All credit to Altidore, I’m glad he kicked ass by winning 5-0.

    I hate to defend FIFA or Blatter, but the record is not all negative. The 32 team World Cup has done a lot to grow the game beyond Latin America and Europe, and the World Club Cup is more and more a positive addition to the game. It moves to Morocco next year and that is going to great. Also, the decision to have South Afrcia host the World Cup was bold and positive for the game and country. I wish FIFA would settle for older (if safe) stadiums, more local vendors, and less tax exemptions though.

    1. Thanks for the article S04th. To be honest I didn’t hear about that one. It’s just as disgusting.

      I only brought up Hank Aaron because he was going to break Babe Ruth’s all time HR record and there was tons of press on that back in the day.

    2. If you can put degrees of idiocy on things. This isn’t nearly in the same catagory.

      Excluding a Puerto Rican citizen isn’t racist, it is more nationalist.

      It does prove my point however. I browsed the comments and people were offended as any sane person would be.

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