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No racism at Spartak Moscow, say filmed club players

Spartak Moscow players described as "chocolates melting in the sun" by the Russian team's Twitter account claim that "there is no racism" at the club.

Spartak Moscow players described as "chocolates melting in the sun" by the Russian team's Twitter account have said "there is no racism" at the club.

In a short video published on Saturday, which has since been deleted, Spartak showed three black players doing drills at a training camp in Dubai.

"Look at how the chocolates are melting under the sun," the video's caption said, accompanied with smiley face, chocolate bar, and sun emojis.

The footage prompted criticism on social media and was followed up with a disapproving statement by FIFA, but the club has responded with a new video message featuring the players concerned.

In the new post, Brazilian striker Luiz Adriano said that Georgi Dzhikiya - who filmed the original video - was "my brother" and "a club legend", adding: "I love you my friend. There's no racism at Spartak."


Dzhikiya said: "There is no racism in our team, we are all brothers, we're one big family," before Fernando and Pedro Rocha - the other two players referred to as "chocolates" - also appeared smiling alongside Dzhikiya, who kisses Adriano on the cheek, and repeat the message that "there is no racism at Spartak".

Russia has pledged to crack down on racism as the country faces increased scrutiny ahead of this year's World Cup, while Spartak are under investigation by UEFA after fans allegedly hurled racist abuse at Liverpool forward Rhian Brewster in a youth game in December.

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ChinaChina24141351
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Today's Olympic highlights header

Monday's key events


ATHLETICS
· There are no Brits in the women's 100m hurdles final, but Puerto Rico's Jasmine Camacho-Quinn, fresh from breaking the Olympic record in the semis, will hope to pip world record holder Kendra Harrison to gold (3.50am)
· The women's 5000m final also has no Team GB representation, but two-time world champion Hellen Obiri of Kenya will be looking to add an Olympic gold to her list of honours (1.40pm)

SAILING
· The women's skiff 49er FX (6.33am) and men's skiff 49er (7.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races

FOOTBALL
· A place in the women's gold medal match is up for grabs, starting with an all-North American semi-final between United States and Canada (9am)
· Australia, who edged past Team GB's in a seven-goal quarter-final thriller, take on Sweden in the second semi-final (12pm)

CYCLING
· The track cycling schedule gets underway, with Team GB holding a particular interest in the team pursuit qualifying. Laura Kenny is part of the women's team (7.54am), while the men's team includes Ed Clancy (9.02am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· The Gadirova twins Jessica and Jennifer will both take part in the women's floor final as they look to add to their team bronze (9.57am)

WEIGHTLIFTING
· Newly-crowned European champion Emily Campbell flies the flag for Great Britain in the women's +87kg, but faces stiff competition for medals from China's Li Wenwen and New Zealand's Laurel Hubbard (11.50am)

HOCKEY
· The women's hockey quarter-finals begin, with Team GB last up against Spain (1pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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