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AC Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan and his team-mates walked off the pitch during the first half of the Serie A match at Udinese on Saturday evening.

The 28-year-old France international left the action shortly after his team had taken the lead, apparently indicating to referee Fabio Maresca he had heard racist abuse from the crowd at the Stadio Friuli.

Maignan was followed by the other Milan players but they returned to the pitch soon after and play was able to resume around seven minutes after Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s goal had broken the deadlock.

Maignan was beaten three minutes later by a Lazar Samardzic shot and the teams went in at half-time level at 1-1 after six minutes of stoppage time.

The second half passed without further controversy, with Milan winning the contest 3-2.

Substitute Florian Thauvin gave Udinese the lead but fellow replacement Luka Jovic levelled with a close-range finish with eight minutes remaining, before another second-half replacement – Noah Okafor – won it for the visitors in added time.

Milan said on X, formerly Twitter, after the match: “There is absolutely no place in our game for racism: we are appalled. We are with you, Mike.”

Inter, leaders of Serie A, were quick to reply to the post in support of their city rivals.

The Nerazzurri added on X: “We are brothers of the world, against all forms of discrimination. By your side.”

The official account of the league, @SerieA, added: “The league condemns all forms of racism.”

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