Simon Zebo Opens Up On ‘Racist’ Abuse He Received During Ulster Game

Disappointment.

Simon Zebo has opened up on his utter “disappointment” after receiving some rather untoward abuse in Racing’s Champions Cup defeat to Ulster at Kingspan last week.

An investigation is ongoing, with EPCR, Ulster and Racing 92 keen to get to the bottom of it. Zebo says he expected to get a bit of abuse from the crowd on his return to Ireland, but what happened clearly went too far.

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“I knew I was probably in for a rough time off the crowd when I was going back to play,” he told Jim Hamilton in an interview for Rugby Pass.

“An Irish player going back to play against another Irish team. Me scoring my try the last day against Ulster and not being shy about celebrating. The type of character I probably am. I’m not an introverted person. I’m not afraid to express myself and play with a smile on my face, not everybody enjoys that or wants that to be the rugby way. I was in for a tough time, got a good bit of stick off the crowd which was quite entertaining for the most part, from minute one to minute forty when I came off.

“But it was all good-natured and what have you, it was going in one ear and out the other for 90% of the game. I think somebody just got a bit carried away and there was a lot of noise going on. That’s why it will probably be difficult to find. It was like somebody just came up and whispered in my ear.”

Zebo says it was “pretty clear” what was said to him on the day and revealed it’s something he had to deal with a lot growing up.

“Somethings that click and stick with you. It was pretty clear to me. What was said was just disappointing. I was coming back to play in my country again. It is something that happened to me quite a bit when I was younger.”

You can watch his interview in full below.