When he returns to Udine, Mike Maignan will act as AC Milan’s goalkeeper but he will not be an honorary citizen, as seemed possible in the aftermath of the game earlier in the month.
As La Gazzetta dello Sport (seen below) reports this morning, the proposal put forward by the city’s mayor – Alberto Felice De Toni – was rejected last night by the Council of the Friulian capital.
In total 38 councillors voted with 25 in favour, 13 against and 3 absent, and that wasn’t enough. For the proposal to be approved it was necessary to get three-quarters voting in favour, therefore 31 vots.
The negotiations of the last few days, with the majority chasing votes to reach the threshold, did not bring the desired results.
In fact, the shameful story of the racist insults suffered by the Rossoneri goalkeeper – Maignan had left the pitch and the referee Maresca had suspended the match for five minutes – has become a political case in Udinese.
The proposal for recognition had been put forward directly by the mayor Alberto Felice De Toni, at the helm of a centre-left coalition. Yesterday was not a surprise, because the local debate in recent days made it clear the notion was unlikely to be passed.
“I note with regret that the center-right was not at our side in this delicate moment. The opportunity was missed to demonstrate that our city is united and that it clearly distances itself from what happened, which does not represent the city in the slightest. Nor even our fans,” De Toni said.
“Our intent was twofold: a strong, highly symbolic position against any type of discrimination and at the same time the defence of our city and our fans from unjust accusations.
“It was disappointing how the minority made it a topic of mere political conflict, almost parochial, fuelling divisions and controversies.
“Many government ministers in office, such as Piantedosi, Abodi, Salvini, of the same colour as the councillors who voted against today, have taken a very hard line against the racist insults that occurred at the stadium, hoping for a change in the way of dealing with these cases also from an operational point of view.”
Milan did not comment. Since the evening of January 21st at the Bluenergy Stadium, the Rossoneri have rallied around Maignan and supported him, even silently.
The day after the events in Udine, Milan silenced their social networks, then promoted a series of initiatives in support of the fight against racism.
Among these, the decision to stop at minute 16 (Maignan’s shirt number) of the match against Bologna on Saturday evening at San Siro, which was an initiative also appreciated by the Emilian club.