Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has hit back at suggestions that chants from CSKA Moscow fans during their recent Champions League match were misinterpreted.
UEFA president Michel Platini requested an investigation into the alleged racist chants but CSKA representative Michael Sanadze denied any incidents of abuse. However, the 30-year-old has reacted angrily to suggestions he misheard the chants, something reportedly implied by CSKA striker and fellow Ivory Coast international Seydou Doumbia.
"I am not deaf," he remarked to BBC Afrique. "We are all humans. It is not a nice feeling to go and play a football match, to bring joy to the people and to be called a monkey or to hear monkey noises. I don't look like a monkey. Other people must have seen it. Doumbia is a young brother. Someone I admire who I have known a long time - we come from the same country.
"I don't want to say things that will put him in trouble but you can see a little bit the manipulation around all this. It is so pathetic and so sad to see things [racism] like that. I am ashamed to still have to talk about this subject. We know there are very large stakes for the country [Russia] around the World Cup. But let's leave FIFA and UEFA to do their work. UEFA has decided to apply the rules - that's all we want.
"A lot of things have been said about racism. If today an organization and supporters stray from the straight path or slip up, the goal is to see them straight again."
However, Doumbia denies speaking to the press after the Russian side was consigned to a 2-1 defeat by City, rejecting notions he accused Toure of exaggerating his claims of racist abuse.
"I want to clarify my position after my Ivory Coast teammate and friend Yaya Toure accused CSKA fans of racism," read a statement on Doumbia's Facebook fan page. "I want to insist that I did not talk to any journalist about these facts so none of the quotes you read in the press came from me."
- Sports & Recreation
- Seydou Doumbia
- Michel Platini