Antisemitic Osasuna fans fined by FA

By Simon Griver, December 17, 2009

The Spanish FA have fined Osasuna £5,340 after their fans were found guilty of hurling antisemitic abuse towards Real Mallorca’s Israeli goalkeeper Dudu Awat in La Liga last weekend.

Referee Alvarez Izquierdo noted in his match report to the Spanish FA that the crowd at the Navarro stadium in Pamplona, chanted “Jewish bastard” every time Awat touched the ball, and that the fans only stopped their racist abuse in the second half following five requests over the public announcement system.

The fans waved Palestinian flags and also shouted “murderer” at Awat.

Unfazed by the chanting, Awat said: “This happens to me every time I play here in Pamplona. It really makes me happy that we won.”

The Spanish press recalled that similar racist chants were heard in previous seasons in Pamplona when Awat played against Osasuna for both Racing Santander and Deportivo La Coruna.

Awat said: “In all my seven years playing in Spain this was the worst abuse I have ever had.”

Awat joined Real Mallorca from Deportivo La Coruna last January when the islanders were struggling against relegation. The Israeli international keeper’s good form helped Mallorca finish mid-table last season, while this year the team are placed fifth, and challenging for a top-four Champions League qualification place.

Last updated: 4:57pm, December 17 2009