Barcelona football (soccer) defender Dani Alves reacted perfectly to a racist rival Villarreal fan who hurled a banana onto the field, and naturally, the clip of his awesome response has gone viral.
Alves was about to take a corner kick during the game when the banana was thrown onto the field, so he quickly picked it up, peeled it, and put it in his mouth before jumping right back in to take the kick.
Foreign footballers like Alves have been dealing with similar displays of racism for years, so as the defender pointed out after the incident, eating the banana launched at him was his natural reaction.
“I’ve been here 11 years and I’ve been suffering this the whole time, so I just face it with humour,” Alves allegedly said, according to a tweet from AS News.
Last year, following a game in Madrid, Alves commented on the racism that he has faced while playing professional sports.
“I go through this constantly in all the grounds I go to,” said Alves to ESPN FC. “It is a shame, as fans can like you or not, and there can be heated moments within games, but the crowd should just support their own team. I have been here [in Spain] for ten years and since the first year this kind of thing has happened. There are worse grounds [than the Bernabeu]. It happens all over Spain. I lived through it at Sevilla. Until action is taken, nothing will be fixed.”
Following the incident, Alves’s teammate Neymar took to Instagram to post a picture of himself holdiing an unpeeled banana in one hand and his son, who was holding a toy banana, in another hand, with the caption, “We are all monkeys.”
In the end, Alves and his Barcelona teammates won 3-2 against Villarreal, and the banana-eating moment definitely made the victory that much, well, sweeter.
Thank you, Dani Alves, for combating racism, one banana at a time.