Ex-Derby Player Stefano Eranio Sacked By Swiss TV Channel Over Dodgy Racist Remarks Made Live On Air

Chris Wright

22nd, October 2015

3 Comments

Photo: Piero Cruciatti/LaPresse

Former Derby County and Italy winger Stefano Eranio has been sacked by Swiss television company RSI after making some decidedly iffy comments while criticising Roma defender Antonio Rüdiger live on air.

Eranio was in the studio to analyse Roma’s 4-4 draw against Bayer Leverkusen in the Champions League on Tuesday evening.

Running the rule over the lapse defending on show, the ex-Genoa winger picked out Rüdiger specifically before trotting out the following old chestnut:

Black players in the defensive line often make these mistakes because they’re not concentrated

They are powerful physically, but when it is time to think … they often make this type of error.

After being swiftly relieved of his post by RSI, Eranio then attempted to apologise and explain his comments in an interview with Italian website Tuttomercatoweb, only to make things even worse by reiterating his “black players ain’t so good at thinkin'” tosh all over again.

It’s disappointing that people have created all this controversy. I didn’t offend anyone and I don’t want people to make out as if I’m racist. Anyone who knows me is well aware that I am not.

It was a misunderstanding, I don’t want to be made to appear racist. If they didn’t like my comment, they could’ve just told me and interrupted our collaboration. Why create all this controversy?

Just leave it there Stefano, mate.

It irritates me to be thrown to the wolves like this. The truth is I gave an incorrect opinion, in the sense that if I’d had to time to explain I would’ve said that I meant black players have never had a school of football in tactical terms similar to ours.

Rüdiger read the situation badly because black players are not accustomed to paying attention to certain details. If they were as detail-oriented as us, then they’d dominate the spot, because they have everything in terms of strength and technique.

Oh. Oh dear.

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3 Comments

  1. Jeremia says:

    Let he who never thought of the same while watching a game from the African Cup of Nations cast the first stone.

  2. P says:

    His initial comment was quite stupid no matter how he misspoke. A man his age who is a professional TV broadcaster should know far better and he rightfully lost his job.

    However, his follow up remarks bring attention to an important issue, as FIFA has done jack shit to help developing African players, the African league, and African players who make the move to Europe. If you have time and means, find a documentary called the “Lost Boys” of Football or something along those lines. Thousands of young African men and boys under 18 end up homeless in Europe each year when they spend their life savings reaching Europe to try out for top clubs, only to be let go within weeks.

    Given the profits European clubs make off of African players, who in many cases have not been given the tactical nurturing since early childhood that European boys can often be blessed with, I think he is actually attempting to make a valid, and compassionate point, albeit in a very insensitive and misleading manner.

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