Phil Neville hails ‘class act’ Wayne Rooney for his handling of alleged racist abuse during MLS game

    Phil Neville labelled Wayne Rooney a 'class act' after Inter Miami's win in Washington (Picture: Getty)
    Phil Neville labelled Wayne Rooney a ‘class act’ after Inter Miami’s win in Washington (Picture: Getty)

    Phil Neville has hailed Wayne Rooney for his handling of alleged racist abuse during a Major League Soccer match between DC United and Inter Miami.

    The former Manchester United players are both managers in MLS, with Neville in charge of David Beckham’s franchise Inter Miami and Rooney the boss of Washington-based DC United after he joined them from Derby County in July.

    The sides met for a league clash on Sunday but it was overshadowed by an alleged racist incident, with reports claiming that DC United’s Taxiarchis Fountas racially abused Inter Miami’s Damion Lowe in the 59th minute of the match.

    It led to a four-minute stoppage as Neville and Rooney were summoned by the referee and led to the DC United boss substituting accused player Fountas.

    ‘There was a racist comment that was unacceptable,’ Neville said after his side won 3-2 at Audi Field.

    ‘A word was used that I think is unacceptable in society. I think it’s the worst word in the world.

    ‘There is no place at all for racism on a football field or society.

    ‘I must commend my players for keeping their calm, I must commend the referee – a really difficult situation he followed the protocols set out by the MLS – and I must give massive, massive respect to Wayne Rooney for dealing with it in the way that he did.

    ‘I have always known him as a class act and today he went up in my estimation more than he has ever done, more than any goal he has ever scored.’

    DC United released a statement after the match, which read: ‘[We] are aware of the allegations involving a player during the match against Inter Miami CF.

    ‘The club will work closely with Major League Soccer and Inter Miami to investigate the incident.’

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