Dani Alves: There are no colours and races – Inside, we all have the same colour blood
Barcelona full-back Dani Alves has spoken about the banana throwing incident at Villarreal, his immediate reactions, as well as the need for people to learn more tolerance, regardless of race, colour or creed.
Speaking with Brazilian network, Radio Globo, Dani Alves explained that his reaction to eating the banana after it was thrown at him, was a completely spur of the moment act on his part. He did admit that a more public response has been on his mind for some while, which this incident provoked with the massive coverage via social networks.
“My reaction was purely spontaneous. I have been talking about things like this with my friends though, thinking we should start a campaign. The world has moved on and we have to move on with it. It’s a kind of mentality that just doesn’t add up. Whether it’s in football or normal life, we have to move with the times.”
With the news that police have images of the fan at El Madrigal, who threw the banana, Alves suggested he’d very much like to put a copy of that image on his social networks.
“If I could, I’d put up a photo of the fan on the internet, so he felt shamed by what he did. Then, he wouldn’t be able to show his face at any stadium.”
Alves also explained that he feels there’s more racism and intolerance in European countries, such as Spain, than there is in South America. This he feels is surprising, given the amount of joy that foreign players have brought to the European game.
“Prejudice is more about outsiders than colour. Not that things like this should happen of course, because the ones bringing such brightness to their football, is the foreigners.”
The Brazilian suggested however that when it’s directed toward himself, he tries not to let it get to him.
“Things like this have been going on for a while and we take it in good humour. Offence only comes if the receiver of such taunts feels offended.”
The final message from Alves, given the fantastic support from footballing stars around the world, with many top names posting images of themselves with a humble banana and mirroring the sentiment of the “we’re all monkeys” hashtag on Twitter, is one of encouragement and education, to help people change their narrow-minded views.
“We need to take action about things like this. We have to open their minds, try to help them understand that we’re all equal. There are no colours and races. Inside, we all have the same colour blood.”