MADRID (AP) – Valencia player Moktar Diakhabi spoke about becoming a victim of unbearable and harmful racial insults. Cadiz defender Juan Cala spoke of the shock of being charged without proof and becoming a criminal.
Diakhabi, who is black, wants to take action from football officials. Kala apologizes.
The players at the center of this weekend’s incident spoke publicly on Tuesday about the conflicting versions of what happened in the “Valencia” – “Cadiz” match on Sunday in the Spanish championship.
Diakhabi repeated that he had been insulted and described the obscene language used against him. Kala assured that he had never used those words and said that he would sue his accusers without evidence.
Diakhabi, who is French, broke his silence with a video posted on social networks. He speaks Spanish in the video.
“Two days later I am calmer, I want to talk about what happened. “There is a play, a player insulted me,” he said, repeating the language he had spoken against him. “It is unbearable. You have all seen my reaction. “It can not happen in normal life, especially in football.”
He said that after his team-mates left the pitch, a player from Cիզdiz asked if they would return if Kala apologized, but “we said ‘no’, you can’t do that, then just apologize.”
Valencia returned to the field after saying that the team felt threatened by the referee with the prospect of losing points. The club said that Diakhabi told his teammates that it was good for them to return.
“I am fine now, but it was very painful,” Diakhabi said. “I hope the league takes action, the evidence clarifies everything.”
The French player also thanked his club, teammates and fans for their support.
Calla, who is Spanish, later spoke at a press conference organized by Cadiz. He said he wanted to give his version immediately after the game, but the club said to wait.
He said that he was in shock, complaining about the “circus” created in connection with the incident, before even listening to him.
“I was judged even before the game ended, without any evidence,” he said. “No one deserves this kind of lynching.”
He said it was strange that no one had heard the insult to Diakhabi, not on the pitch or at home, through dozens of cameras used during a televised broadcast at the empty Ramon de Carantsa stadium.
The defender said that during the game he tried to tell Diakhabi that he was not offended. Kala said the only words he used after gathering with Diakhabi were “Leave me alone.”
He said that the French player either misunderstood him or made the accusation. Kala said he would not mind sitting down with Diakhabi to explain what kind of person he was, but felt that everyone had already judged him unfairly.
“Here is my phone, they can call me to apologize for what I went through,” said Kala, who said he had received numerous threats that his family was suffering because of the situation. “For the sake of the country, I would like someone to call me and apologize.”
Kala was particularly outraged by Valencia president Anil Murti, who directly blamed Calais in a video released to the club on Monday, saying the Cadiz player looked like a guilty man.
“My lawyers will deal with it,” he said, adding that even Diakhab could be targeted in court. “I will defend my honor to the end.”
Calla said he did not believe in racism among Spanish football players, noting that he had not had a problem with anyone four years ago, during the 12 years he had been playing professionally.
He said he had received hundreds of messages of support from people in the football world. He said that the club իր his teammates of “Cadiz” are completely behind him.
Valencia reacted quickly after the new conference in Calais with the statement “Juan Cala, we do not believe you”.
“Kala missed a great opportunity to admit his mistake – to apologize to the affected player. “Instead, he attacked both Diakhabi and other members of the Valencia CF,” the club said, adding that it “fully” supports and believes in its player.
“After the threats made by Kala at the press conference, President Anil Murtin and Moktar Diakhab remain firmly convinced to fight to the end, if necessary, for the sake of football and the public interest,” the club said. “The CF of Valencia will not stop fighting for the improvement of the protocol, the fight against racism in football.”
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