Women’s football club Juventus came under fire on Thursday after a racist image appeared on its social media account.
The photo showed a Juventus player wearing a conical hat and narrowing her eyes with her fingers. The photo also included a bad emoji.
The club was immediately criticized on Twitter.
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Juventus issued a statement apologizing for the racist tweet.
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“We sincerely apologize that our tweet, which was not meant to cause controversy or have racial overtones, may have offended anyone,” the Italian club said in a follow-up tweet.
“Juventus have always been against racism and discrimination. #DifferencesMakeTheDifference.”
The club posted a longer statement on its website.
“We would like to express our sincere apologies for the social post which read as racially discriminatory content on the Juventus Women’s Football Twitter account yesterday.
“Juventus immediately realized that Club had made an unforgivable mistake, and this mistake has seriously hurt the feelings of all those who oppose racial discrimination.
“For such an error, the Club takes full responsibility for the occurrence of the incident and its serious consequences. Opposing racial discrimination and supporting the common development of several cultures are the principles to which Juventus as a club has always adhered and continues to implement training.
“Juventus recognize this mistake, and Club will do the most careful thought and scrutiny to prevent similar things from happening again.”
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Juventus’ women’s football is among the most successful in the sport. The club have won Serie A three consecutive seasons.