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Support withdrawn for official

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Sassuolo is the latest Serie A club to withdraw its support for Carlo Tavecchio, a leading candidate for the presidency of the Italian football federation, following his alleged racist comments.

A club statement yesterday said its owners “stay true to their values in the world of sport and thus maintain Carlo Tavecchio’s candidacy is no longer sustainable.”

Fiorentina, Sampdoria and Cesena already withdrew support for Tavecchio, who originally had the backing of all Serie A clubs apart from Juventus and Roma.

Tavecchio sparked outrage on Friday when he discussed the presence of foreign players in Italy. Using a hypothetical name, he said, “In England they select players based on professionalism, whereas we say that ‘Opti Poba’ is here, he was eating bananas before, and now he’s starting for Lazio, and that’s OK.”

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