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Last Updated: Sunday, 26 February 2006, 01:22 GMT
Eto'o makes anti-racism protest
Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o
Eto'o has been targeted by Zaragoza fans before
Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o threatened to leave the pitch after being subjected to racial abuse by Real Zaragoza supporters on Saturday.

Eto'o was eventually persuaded to continue playing by coach Frank Rijkaard and several team-mates.

Referee Victor Esquinas Torres stopped play during Barca's 2-0 win to ask for an announcement to be made to the crowd calling for an end to the abuse.

Real Zaragoza were fined 600 euros last season after Eto'o was racially abused.

"It was a shame - Samuel is a human being and he felt bad on the pitch," Rijkaard said.

"But I was pleased with the attitude of his team-mates who told him to continue.

"He proved he was able to overcome the circumstances and he made a valuable contribution to our victory.

The Spanish Federation have to start taking proper measures and we as black players also have to act
Zaragoza striker Ewerthon

"It's a real shame that things like this happen as it is thanks to players like Samuel that the fans come to the stadium to be entertained.

"I would also like to say that the referee acted very well."

Real Zaragoza were also fined 600 euros (400) earlier this month when their fans directed racist insults at Real Betis' forward Robert.

Zaragoza striker Ewerthon said he was ashamed of the action of the club's fans.

"I'm black too," he said.

"I'm a Zaragoza player and totally opposed to the fans who did this. I've been abused too at other grounds in Spain but we need to rise above this.

"The Spanish Federation have to start taking proper measures and we as black players also have to act.

"We are here to work and if things carry on like this it will be impossible."

In November, Messina defender Zoro threatened to halt a Serie A game in Italy after suffering racial abuse from Inter Milan supporters.


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