An Italian commentator has been forced to apologise for claiming lineswomen were ‘disgusting’ and ‘unwatchable’ during a live broadcast.
Sergio Vessicchio was commentating the regional fixture between Campanian sides Agropoli and Sant’Agnello when he launched his sexist tirade against female assistant referee Annalisa Moccia.
“I’d ask the director to take a look at the lineswoman, who is unwatchable,” he said during his broadcast on CanaleCinqueTv.
“It’s disgusting to see women come to be referees in a League where teams spend only thousands of Euros… [this is] a joke from the Federation.”
That was followed by a tweet, where Vessicchio defended his actions.
“I personally think that getting women in football is wrong for many reasons, so I confirm my thoughts,” he wrote.
“Why don’t all these seedy moralists campaign to make them play with men? That’s the true discrimination.”
However, Vessicchio ended up apologising after local authorities suspended him from journalistic activities.
“I was wrong and I did something stupid,” he conceded to Radio CRC.
“I expressed myself in the wrong way; I’m not sexist and I’d let women rule the world. I was live and couldn’t make up for what I said right away.
“I immediately realised that what I said was nonsense and now I’ll pay the consequences.
“Women officials are statistically better than men. I didn’t want to create a frenzy. I’m not discriminatory.
“I’m all for integration. I attacked the system and the Federation. I was wrong to express my thoughts in the manner I did.”
The weekend should have been a celebratory occasion for women’s football after Sunday’s match between Juventus and Fiorentina spawned an Italian-record attendance of 39,000.
Image credit CanaleCinqueTv