Anti-discriminatory body Fare says Mario Balotelli “should be given added protection by referees” rather than being booked for complaining about alleged racist chants.
Balotelli was given a yellow card by referee Nicolas Rainville after protesting to him about fans in his side’s 3-2 defeat at Dijon.
“The French league is one of the most diverse in Europe and so one would expect referees to understand and act seriously after players complain about racism,” said Fare.
Italy forward Balotelli, 27, who has played for Inter Milan, Manchester City, AC Milan and Liverpool, was unhappy with the reaction from the home fans when he missed a shot in the 72nd minute, gesturing to the Dijon supporters to be quiet.
“Mario Balotelli should be be given added protection by referees and stadium officials, not a yellow card when he brings it to the attention of a referee,” said Football Against Racism in Europe,which is an international organisation with more than 150 members in nearly 40 European countries.
“We are in touch with the French FA and are due to meet members of their senior administration next week.
“What is clear is that racism and other forms if discrimination continue to be a big issue in football across Europe. Progress in some countries is slow.
“The need for strong action and vigilance by every football association is paramount.”