Players, officials kneel before PSG-Istanbul Basaksehir restart

Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Players and match officials took a knee before the start of Wednesday's Champions League game between Paris Saint-Germain and Istanbul Basaksehir.

The match was postponed from Tuesday to Wednesday after both clubs walked off the pitch and refused to return following accusations that the game's fourth referee, Sebastian Coltescu, had used a racial term to identify Istanbul assistant coach Pierre Webo, who is from Cameroon, before he was sent off with a red card.


"UEFA is aware of an incident during [Tuesday's] Champions League match between Paris Saint-Germain and Istanbul Basaksehir and will be conducting a thorough investigation," European soccer's governing body, UEFA, said in a statement Tuesday. "Racism, and discrimination in all its forms, has no place within football.

"UEFA has -- after discussion with both clubs -- decided on an exceptional basis to have the remaining minutes of the match played [Wednesday] with a new team of match officials."

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When the teams entered the field Wednesday, players and the new group of officials gathered around the middle circle. The players and referees then kneeled, with some raising a fist, before the resumption of the match in the 13th minute. The players also wore "No To Racism" shirts during warm-ups.

Neymar had a hat trick and Kylian Mbappe scored twice as PSG earned a 5-1 win over Istanbul Basaksehir.

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"Of course, I am proud of what was done. A lot of things were said but in fact, there's nothing better than actions," Mbappe said after the match. "We are tired. We don't want to go through this again. We're all human beings and this was intolerable. People are fed up and we had to do something."

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