Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger said he shares “the same fate” as Raheem Sterling when it comes to suffering racist abuse during football matches and praised his club for taking swift action against those who allegedly targeted the Manchester City star.
Chelsea suspended four supporters from attending matches at Stamford Bridgeafter TV footage appeared to show one fan racially abusing Sterling as he retrieved the ball from the byline during a Premier League match against City in December.
Metropolitan Police are also investigating the incident and, as Chelsea prepare to take on City again at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, Rudiger — who was also the target of racist abuse from Lazio midfielder Senad Lulic during his time at Roma in Serie A — expressed sympathy with Sterling.
“Raheem and I share the same fate,” Rudiger said in an interview with German magazine kicker. “It is a scandal that something like this still exists.
“It’s good Chelsea are pulling through with the bans for a few fans. But such people are everywhere. And I’d wish for other clubs to follow Chelsea’s example.
“You must punish them severely. And I appeal to everyone in the stadium to speak out against those people.”