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Atlético Madrid hit with partial stadium closure after racist abuse

AFP
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Atlético Madrid hit with partial stadium closure after racist abuse
Athletic Bilbao's Spanish forward #11 Nico Williams shows his skin color as he celebrates scoring his team's first goal following alleged racist insults. Photo: OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP.

Atlético Madrid must partially close their stadium for two La Liga matches after Athletic Bilbao winger Nico Williams suffered racial abuse there, the Spanish football federation said.

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The Spain international heard monkey chants directed at him in the first half of his team's 3-1 defeat at Atlético's Metropolitano stadium in Spain's top flight on Saturday.

"(Atlético have been issued) a sanction of partial closure of their sports venue for a period of two matches and a financial penalty of €20,000 ($21,350)," said the federation's competition committee in a statement.

READ ALSO: World Cup winner Del Bosque to watch over Spain's scandal-hit federation

One area of Atlético's stadium will be shut for the upcoming league matches against Celta Vigo and Osasuna, as they strive for a top four finish.

"I went to take the corner and I heard monkey noises," said Williams after Saturday's game.

"There weren't many of them. There are stupid people everywhere... I hope this changes bit by bit."

Williams scored after the abuse and celebrated by pointing to his arm in reference to his skin colour.

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"(The celebration) was with a bit of anger, it's not normal to be insulted for the colour of your skin," he added.

Spanish football has suffered a spate of racist incidents in recent years, many of which have been aimed at Real Madrid forward Vinicius Junior.

The Brazil international earned global support after facing off with a fan who was abusing him last year at Valencia's Mestalla stadium, which also faced subsequent partial closure.

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: The racism problem that has blighted Spanish football

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