February 24, 2017 / 1:20 PM / a year ago

Corsica's Bastia punished for fans' racist abuse of Nice striker Balotelli

(Reuters) - Soccer’s Ligue 1 disciplinary committee has ordered Corsica’s Bastia to close part of their stadium for three matches after a group of supporters shouted racist insults at Nice striker Mario Balotelli during a 1-1 draw in January.

The club was also given a suspended one-point deduction, meaning that for now it is still second-from-bottom in the standings on 23 points, a point ahead of Lorient.

The committee listed “shouts with racist connotations towards Mario Balotelli, use of pyrotechnic devices and intrusion of supporters at the edge of the field” among the reasons for the closure on the Ligue 1 website. (www.lfp.fr)

Bastia has already banned one supporter who was caught on camera making monkey chants at Balotelli.

Balotelli was given a suspended ban after being sent off in Saturday’s 1-0 win at Lorient for arguing with the referee.

The 26-year-old is already suspended for Nice’s home game with Montpellier later on Friday, and the league said any further misconduct would trigger that additional ban.

Reporting by Silvia Recchimuzzi in Gdynia Additional reporting by Clement Martinot; Editing by Louise Ireland

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