The three major New York Red Bulls support groups — the Vikings Army (VA), the Empire Supporters Club, and Torcida 96 — say they will go out in protest during this weekend’s game against the Houston Dynamo following the racist suspension of RBNY player Dante Fanzer last weekend.
in Joint statementAll three groups say they plan to protest both the club and MLS over their inaction. They chose not only to wear black for the match, but to walk out of the ‘South Ward’ supporters’ section in protest before the match began.
“South Ward is united in our desire to protest in response to the racial abuse that occurred during the game on April 8, as well as the inadequate response provided by the New York Red Bulls and Major League Soccer,” the statement began.
It is Southward’s position that we will not provide active in-stadium support at Red Bull Arena until Dante Vanzier and Gerhard Strober have been fairly sanctioned and held accountable for their actions.
While Dante received a six-game suspension from Major League Soccer, we don’t feel that’s enough. MLS has failed to adhere to its “zero tolerance” policy towards racism. We call on MLS to reassess their findings and set a precedent that racism in any form will not be tolerated.
All three groups of New York Red Bulls fans plan to walk out of the team’s next game
Fans outraged after recent racist remarks made by newcomer Dante Fanzier (13)
They also expressed their anger at coach Gerhard Struber’s inaction during the match
In a joint statement, the fan groups said they will continue to protest until change comes along
We do not agree with the lack of sanction by MLS and RBNY for Gerhard Strober. His actions during and after this incident are unacceptable. We demand (sporting director) Jochen Schneider to dismiss Gerhard immediately.
Our protest begins on Saturday. We invite everyone at Red Bull Arena to join us in exiting the stadium at kick-off.
We also call for a boycott of all concessions and merchandise stands, and for donations of what you would have spent on the field to be directed to Black Players for Change, a 501(c)3 organization committed to addressing racial injustice, inequality and injustice.
“We plan to continue to protest the RBNZ and the MLS until our conditions are met or we feel the organization has made meaningful and acceptable changes.”
DailyMail.com reached out to the Red Bulls New York front office for comment on this joint statement and received this response: “We had an important conversation Wednesday night with the board members of all three supporter groups. We respect their decision to act in a peaceful manner tomorrow night. We will continue to engage with them through the weeks.” coming.
Vanzier’s words during an on-field brawl led to a long pause in play that led to 21 minutes of extra time at the end of the match. The officials were consulting with the players and coaches about the continuation of the match or not.
Major League Soccer announced yesterday that Vanzer has been suspended for six matches over his remarks. He was also fined an undisclosed amount.
Reaction to the comment was largely negative, with some—including CBS Sports’ Charlie Davies—saying that Fanzier should have been banned for a longer period of time.
In a statement released by the club on behalf of Fanzier, he apologized for his words.
Vanzier was suspended by MLS for six matches and fined an undisclosed amount
Despite pleas to remove Vanzier from opposing players and managers, New York Red Bulls coach Gerhard Strober kept the Belgian on the field until the 87th minute, when he was substituted.
“I take full responsibility for my actions,” Fanzier’s statement began. While I did not intend to cause any harm or offense in my language, I know I did and for that I am deeply sorry. I will accept any suspension, fine and advice given by the Football League and the club.
I will use this opportunity to improve myself, reflect and dedicate my time and efforts to working with organizations that address racial injustice.
The day after the statement was issued and prior to the suspension, the club said that Vanzier would be stepping away from the team.
The statement issued by the club on behalf of Strober did not include the words “apology” or “sorry”, although his inaction was directly criticized in the club’s statement.
With the incident occurring, and the long layoff still in progress, Earthquakes coach Luchi Gonzalez said he “was adamant about pointing out that the player should not be on the field any longer”.
Despite this, Vanzier was not taken off the field until the 87th minute.
Stroper’s statement from Monday read: “During our game on Saturday, I made a decision that I thought was the best given the information I had at that moment.
“While there was a lot of uncertainty at the time, with the information I know now, the right decision was to immediately remove Dante Vanzeir from the game.”
It wasn’t until Thursday’s news conference that Strooper Publicly apologizesaying, “First of all, I’m going to say sorry for a night like this,” Add later that he “must have taken out (Fanzier) earlier”.
Fans from all three fan groups vented their anger against the club
In recent days, the club’s fans have repeatedly called for Strober’s sacking not only for his inaction on the issue, but for what they believe is his lack of accountability.
The leaders of the three supporter groups met with leaders in the Red Bulls front office including club general manager Marc de Grandpres and sporting director Jochen Schneider as well as Vanzier and Strober.
According to one account of the meeting, some members thought Fanzier was “sincere and sincere in his apology” when speaking to supporters.
Meanwhile, the same version of events claimed that the leadership ‘certainly felt dissatisfied with what Strober said and the way he said it, with the addition of that memory,’ his explanation and apology appeared not to be. Much behind him. We didn’t feel like he really thought he was wrong or made a mistake.
The game between the Red Bulls and Houston kicks off at 7:30 PM ET on Saturday.