Updates: Anton Hysén, Brave Ref Stands Up to Racists and more…

29 Mar

Photograph: Graham Chadwick/SOLO Syndication

In a week that has given us some reprehensible examples of racism, there were some good things to celebrate. First, the Guardian has this great follow up article  Anton Hysén: ‘Anyone afraid of coming out should give me a call’ and unamadridista is reporting that a referee suspended a match for after the crowd started racially insulting players.  The information (posted below in italics) is in this post, item #4.

Hopefully this will become the norm.  According to El País, the referee, Enrique Manuel Como, suspended a regional game in Extremadura between La Cumbre and Navalmoral in the 73rd minute due to racist insults from the crowd directed at Navalmoral’s two Moroccan players, Akram and Mohamed.  Akram had tried to leave the field, but the referee decided to suspend the game instead.  Navalmoral’s president said that the insults came from one entire section of the stadium, and congratulated the referee because “it’s not an isolated incident and it’s the sixth or seventh time” that it’s happened to the team.  Therefore, he was happy to have found a “brave referee who suspended the game for this reason” and he hopes the other team will be sanctioned.  A worrying note: the referee had to hide out in the locker room with the players until the Guardia Civil arrived.

Nevertheless, gracias Enrique Manuel Como.

Thank you again to una for the great translation and keeping us up to date. Reading something like this gives you hope, doesn’t it? Also in the same post, enjoy shots of Mou’s game vs. the press and El Pirata.

17 Responses to “Updates: Anton Hysén, Brave Ref Stands Up to Racists and more…”

  1. GinaM March 29, 2011 at 3:30 pm #

    Great job to that referee, he should be an example to all referees…

  2. kfunk22 March 29, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    glad to see someone standing up, good on him.

    also: well-voiced and -reasoned response in the readers’ submissions post over at una’s.

    • headbandsandheartbreak March 29, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

      Thanks – I was deeply horrifed by the postings that were made by that girl. I just don’t want it to come back on una. I see that my second comment on today’s post hasn’t been approved yet, but I went into greater detail about my issues with the post, responding to someone named bothered.

      • yvette March 30, 2011 at 12:52 am #

        I just saw your response to Bothered on una’s blog. Excellent comment!

        • headbandsandheartbreak March 30, 2011 at 10:56 am #

          Thanks – I realized I had commented under this name and my other username, so it’s a bit confusing, but something had to be said. The girl was really cavalier about her comments.

  3. Barbara March 29, 2011 at 8:30 pm #

    Those comments about Sami especially bothered me a lot; also the one about Manu & the Sergio story seems to have some possible legal ramifications. Sami is my favorite player & I hope that post doesn’t get repeated/misread/misposted on the internet & cause some problems for him personally and/or professionally. I was glad to see people commenting back & the section removed. Does Sami or Sergio have a girlfriend?

    • headbandsandheartbreak March 29, 2011 at 9:14 pm #

      I adore Sami and I just thought the whole thing was extremely irresponsible. People are already joking about it on ONTD_Football, but I don’t think it’s really a joking matter (esp. the stuff about Sergio hitting someone with his car). It shouldn’t matter who Sami chooses to be with, but I’m not stupid enough to think it might not be an issue for some people. This is precisely why so few professional athletes have come out. I’m hoping that Anton Hysen will be the first of many.

      In answer to your question, Sergio is supposedly currently dating Spanish TV presenter Lara Alvarez. Sami and his girlfriend Kathrin broke up just prior to the World Cup (I believe they were together almost 3 years?) but there were some pictures of a girl we think was her with him at a basketball game in Madrid a couple of months ago, so it seems that they may still be friends at the very least. Doesn’t matter who they date in my opinion though!

      I also found her comments on Manu very insensitive as well.

    • Jenny March 30, 2011 at 12:59 am #

      I was one of the people who totally overreacted over there – and I am filled with regret over it – because I normally don’t. But I couldn’t help it. We joke about bromances in a fun way over here, and at the site I translate for, but we mean it in fun.

      The tone was everything. It wouldn’t have bothered me otherwise. Even the Sergio thing – you can’t take a story like that seriously. A hit and run? It was such obvious hyperbole I couldn’t even get upset.

      What got me so outraged, with fingers flying and hitting “send” all over the place – was the throw-away comment on Manu (arguably, offensive as it was, the least harmful of the three). It was like the final straw – and it was the first observation in the section! It was the comment that set the tone for the whole submission, and I felt an instant wave of nausea.

      This beautiful man has behaved impeccably since arriving. He still suffers from PTSD, gets nervous in crowds and hears phantom gun-shots that aren’t there. He’s scored beautiful goals. He works and works and works when he’s on the pitch. And the comment seemed so typical of the attitude certain fans have towards him. I couldn’t help but feel that this attitude is unconsciously racially motivated, and I still do.

      And again, TONE is everything. I personally think its hilarious that Sergio likes Flamenco (and a little obvious too!) – but tone is everything.

      It wasn’t a funny or witty or affectionate or clever entry – like the ones in other blogs – or like Una’s other postings – which are so clever and funny.

      Anyway – people defended Manu, Sergio and Sami – for all the right reasons – all’s well that ends well, I suppose.

      If the rumours about the strike being cancelled are true, I hope to see all three on the pitch this weekend.

      • headbandsandheartbreak March 30, 2011 at 11:00 am #

        Oh Jenny, I don’t think you overreacted in the slightest. At first, I tried to be polite about it (in my original post under another username) as I thought it was a language issue, but then I realized it was just her being irresponsible (some of her responses have been ridiculous)and I was infuriated.

        She probably has no clue about Manu’s PTSD and is just repeating bullshit rumors that she’s heard elsewhere about him being difficult.

        I’m glad that people are taking her to task on this. But I mean, it’s already become a joke on the internet. In Sergio’s birthday post over on ONTD_Football, people were saying “Oh, he can hit me with his car anytime” and making comments about the different colored eyes and shit. Funny, but not so funny, you know? A lot of folks who are new to the fandom and hear that sort of stuff thrown around flippantly and believe it as truth.

        • Jenny March 30, 2011 at 12:08 pm #

          You are so sweet – I feel so much better. It’s unlike me to “overreact” – I’m a bit of a conflict avoider – so my own reaction shocked me once I had calmed down. I put it down to feeling a little motherly about so many of the Madrid lads, so many of whom are quite a bit younger than I am (at 29 I’m quite a bit older than Mesut, Sami, Sergio, Jail Bait et al.,). I can never think of these players as fully grown up in a way – they are just nice youngsters who work hard to play, are ambitious and collaborative and bring the fans joy.

          Strike averted by the way! Saturday 18:00 local time – Sporting Gijon, at home.

          • headbandsandheartbreak March 30, 2011 at 12:44 pm #

            Oh Jenny, you should never feel bad about sticking up for them. She was obnoxious and obviously has no remorse. The discussion is raging over there. Someone named Sam put up a fantastic response. IsaBella came back and gave a rather arrogant comment starting with “I don’t need to do this but” and claims to be “disappointed” in una and the readers! Seriously?! Ugh. I ran into people like this all the time in the music business who thought they were close to bands, etc. and it’s always disturbing. I wish I knew the journalist who she got access to the Valdebebas with as a plus one. I’d send them a rundown of the crap she was posting. A real journalist is going to know about potential libel, etc.

            I feel really protective of our players too. They get shit on all the time in the media – they don’t need crap like that from so called “fans.” She did all this to make herself seem important. I guess she didn’t anticipate the reaction she was going to get.

            So happy about the strike being averted. I need Los Blancos like a mofo! I changed my hair appointment just in case the game was still on and I’m glad I did. My roots ALSO need a touch up like a mofo but I’m not willing to miss a game to get ’em done! 😉

  4. Jenny March 30, 2011 at 1:04 am #

    It deserves its own comment – Anton Hysen is a beautiful man with a beautiful personality.

    I’d give anything to be that brave, cheerful and optimistic about the things in my life – that strength is what sets unique athletes like him apart, of course, and that’s why we admire them.

    • headbandsandheartbreak March 30, 2011 at 11:10 am #

      Well said, Jenny. He has enormous self-possession at a young age. I’m so glad that he has a fantastic support system in his family, friends and team.

      Did you read that great article about Gareth Thomas that I posted awhile back – about his adjustment to his new team and how he’s living in a hotel, etc. If not, let me know and I will post the link again. It’s an enormously poignant and real account of his adjustment after coming out and the process. It’s such a gift to others to have someone be willing to be so open and vulnerable about their struggles and their successes. He is a great role model and I just love him to pieces.

      • Jenny March 30, 2011 at 12:09 pm #

        I just found it and have bookmarked it for reading!

        • headbandsandheartbreak March 30, 2011 at 12:45 pm #

          It’s a great article. It really touched me when I read it. He seems like a wonderful man.


  1. The Daily Drool: Anton Hysén « Of Headbands and Heartbreak… - May 17, 2011

    […] support from all over the world. We’ve featured him on HB & HB twice before here and here.  Good on you, sexy […]

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