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Soccer: Roma punishment for anti-Neapolitan chants increased

Corner sections to be closed as well as end stands

18 February, 15:21
Soccer: Roma punishment for anti-Neapolitan chants increased (ANSA) - Milan, February 18 - AS Roma's punishment for anti-Neapolitan chants was increased by Serie A's sporting judge on Tuesday after more offensive songs by fans during Sunday's 3-0 win over Sampdoria.

The end stands of Rome's Stadio Olimpico were closed for the Sampdoria match and are set to be off-limits again for Roma's next home game against Inter Milan on March 2 due to offensive chants during a recent Italian Cup tie against Napoli.

But the Distinti Sud corner section of the ground will now also be closed against Inter after fans in that area showed defiance against the punishment by singing chants that included calls for Mt Vesuvius to erupt to "clean" Naples.

The punishment is part of Italian soccer's new regime of tough measures to stamp out racism, which has dogged the game here for many years, and so-called regional discrimination.

Followers of many clubs, including Napoli, have rebelled against the punishment of regional discrimination, saying it targets the leg-pulling that is a traditional part of Italian soccer.

The loss of support in many sections of the ground against Inter will not help Roma's bid for the Serie A title.

Second-placed Roma trail leaders Juventus by nine points, but they have a game in hand.