• Press review: Juventus want answers from Rai over Medhi Benatia racist incident

    Juventus have demanded answers from broadcaster Rai after a TV interview with Medhi Benatia was cut short when the Morocco defender heard a racist remark in his earpiece.

    Benatia heard somebody insult him for his Moroccan background during the interview following Saturday's draw with Torino.

    Rai said it was showing "full solidarity with the footballer and with the club he represents," but also claimed the "unacceptable phrase was not uttered by an employee of our company."

    But Juventus have questioned RAI's version of events and demanded that the company does not "resort to excuses."

    A statement released on Monday said: "Following the regrettable insult Medhi Benatia heard through his earpiece during [the] 'Calcio Champagne' [programme], Juventus Football Club wishes to express its concern over the incident.

    "While acknowledging the Rai statement expressing solidarity, everyone -- and the player first and foremost -- deserves an explanation about what occurred.

    "A number of informal comments, including on social media, have suggested the alleged 'interference' came from the production service Juventus provided Rai Sport at Juventus Stadium.

    "That suggestion is factually unbelievable and technically implausible, given the audio line runs directly from Rai headquarters in Milan into the earpieces. Onsite production does not have direct contact with the guest.

    "Juventus hope that Rai Sport's internal investigation continues without them resorting to excuses, which tend to play down what happened and distort the facts."

    Writing on his Facebook page, Benatia said he was proud of his roots and hit out at what he called an "intolerant minority" in Italy.

    "In light of the deplorable incidents which happened during my interview with Rai Sport after the game against Torino, I wanted to confirm what I heard through my earpiece," he wrote.

    "Be aware that two other people heard the same thing as me. This terrible thing that happened is tragic, but the worst thing is that they are not recognising their mistake. An investigation is under way."

    He thanked Juventus for "doing all they can to protect me" and fans who had sent him messages of support.

    Juventus use Raicom, a member of the Rai group, as a partner for their JTV television channel and are one of five Serie A clubs who use their own technicians and equipment for providing interviews to broadcasters.


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