Goodes 'gutted' by racial slur

AFL player Adam Goodes has called for more to be done to stamp out racism after he was called an "ape" by a Collingwood fan in last night's clash at the MCG.

Goodes wants girl who abused him supported

Sydney Swans AFL player Adam Goodes says the teenage girl who racially abused him needs support. Source: SBS

Sydney Swans player Adam Goodes says he was called an "ape" by a Collingwood fan in last night's clash at the MCG.

Goodes was visibly distressed towards the end of the game, pointing out the fan to security staff who later ejected the young girl.

She's believed to be 13 years of age.

Her comments come in the indigenous round of the AFL, and as the league launches its anti-racism campaign.

Goodes says it's vital players and the community are united in the fight against racism.

"Racism has no place in our industry, it has no place in society, hopefully any person out there that's been named-called, that's been verbally abused, can stand up for themselves after seeing what happend last night."

Goodes says it is not the first time he has been subjected to racial slurs, but that this latest attack has hit him hard.

"When I saw it was a young girl, I was just like 'really?'. I was just like 'how could that happen?' This week is a celebration of our people, our culture.

"It's not her fault. Unfortunately it's what she hears, it's the environment she's grown up in that makes her think it's OK to call people names.

"She would have no idea how it makes someone feel, calling someone an ape. She's 13, she's uneducated. If she wants to pick up the phone and apologise, I'll take that call.

He says when asked by police he refused to press charges against the girl and urged people not to start a 'witch hunt' against the girl over the incident.

Instead he says there should be more education on racism and how it can hurt people.

"It affected me so much I couldn't be on the ground to celebrate a victory last night, to celebrate indigenous round.

"I'm still shattered; personally it's tough."

AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou says it's disappointing to have an incident of racism in the league's Indigenous round.

Mr Demetriou says he will offer support and counselling to the 13-year-old girl and her parents to assure they're not the target of unnecessary retailiation.

He says while the AFL has come a long way in raising awareness in racism, there's clearly a long way to go.

"But I again remind everyone this is a 13-year-old girl. And we need to be very, very careful. Having said that, I want to reiterate again though, we have a zero tolerance policy around these issues. You've seen the great awareness campaign of this week for our indigenous round, the great contribution that our indigenous players make to the game, the great contribution that this code makes to this nation when we talk about the significant role that indigenous Australia plays in this nation."

Geelong captain Joel Selwood has led the tributes to Sydney AFL star Adam Goodes who was visibly distressed after being the victim of the racial taunt during Friday night's MCG match.

Dual Brownlow Medallist Goodes was arguably best-afield in Sydney's 47-point win over Collingwood in the round-nine fixture with 30 disposals and three goals.

However the 33-year-old left the field shaking his head late in the game and went straight into the change rooms to compose himself after clashing with a female fan in the closing stages of the contest.

The fan was evicted from the stadium after Goodes stood only metres away and pointed directly at her in a bid to identify the Collingwood supporter to security staff.

"Much respect for Adam Goodes on all fronts tonight," Selwood said on Twitter.

Sydney midfielder Dan Hannebery said the incident was sad, while Richmond forward Jack Riewoldt was speechless.

"The person who did that has to have a hard look at themselves," Hannebery told website.

"It is a disgrace considering the era that we're in. It's just completely unacceptable.

"I'm really shocked."

Riewoldt said on Twitter: "Something clearly said to Adam Goodes, sitting on the couch speechless and really flat! #bloodydisappointing."

West Coast ruckman Nic Naitanui, whose parents are from Fiji, said: "Not to assume the worst, but to disrespect a legend on Indigenous Round is appalling.

"Racial Vilification has no place in sport and goodesy dealt with it like a champ. Lets NOT let it shadow how well he performed tonight tho," Naitanui added.

Melbourne onballer Nathan Jones said: "Racial vilification has no place in footy or society. Ignorance is no excuse, What a legend & icon @adamroy37 is for our game. #inspiring."

5 min read
Published 25 May 2013 at 1:16pm
By staff
Source: AAP,SBS