Former Celtic midfielder Liam Henderson has hit out at the Serie A anti-racism campaign that made headlines for all the wrong reasons earlier this week.
Italian artist Simone Fugazzotto designed images for the campaign that depicted three monkeys – one white, one black, and one Asian – in an attempt to fight back against the racist term sometimes used by fans in the country.
But the images generated the opposite reaction from what was intended with the league forced to apologise just days later. (BBC)
And Henderson, who’s now playing for Verona, blasted the thinking behind the failed campaign.
“It’s stupid and inappropriate, I think,” the midfielder told AFP, as reported by Yahoo.
“You can’t just brandish Italy. People like to point the finger, but it happens everywhere. It’s a very small minority, the people who do or say something racist are stupid, they’re not educated.
“It’s important to educate these people because it’s truly unacceptable, it’s sad in 2019. I think everyone is doing a lot here, the clubs are coming together.”
Balotelli abused against Henderson’s Verona
Henderson was semi-involved in a recent high-profile incident of racism in the country when Brescia forward Mario Balotelli was subjected to monkey chants in a game against Verona on November 3rd.
“It was the first time I had experienced anything like that,” Henderson said.
“I’d seen it on television, against Lukaku, and Raheem Sterling at Stamford Bridge. I was on the bench, and I didn’t hear anything, but obviously from his reaction he heard something. You don’t react like that for no reason.”
Henderson has clearly matured a lot
Liam Henderson deserves a lot of credit for what he’s done over the past few years. The youngster wasn’t afraid to take a risk and move out to Italy, and he’s seeing the benefits as a result – both on and off the park.
The midfielder comes across as a pretty mature man nowadays, and a lot of that will have stemmed from his time in Italy and Norway among others.
He gave a terrific response to the issue of racism in Italy. If the league had put him in charge of their anti-racism campaign then perhaps they would have got some better results.