Sporting Gijon to close part of stadium because of racial insults

(Alvaro Barrientos/AP)

MADRID — Sporting Gijon says it has been ordered to close part of its stadium during one game in the Spanish league because its fans allegedly racially insulted a player from an opposing team.

Sporting says it was informed by the Spanish football federation Thursday that the punishment was prompted by insults aimed at Athletic Bilbao forward Inaki Williams in a game at the El Molinon in August. Williams is the first black player to score a goal for Athletic in its 117-year history.

The federation says Sporting has five days to identify in which sector the insults happened and close it for one match.

The club says it will appeal the "unfair and disproportionate" ruling, saying it has always taken all necessary measures against racism and other similar offences inside its stadium.

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