Spartak Moscow posts 'racist' tweet about its own players

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Spartak Moscow have sparked outrage on social media, after captioning a Twitter video featuring a number of their black players training in the sun with "See how the chocolate melts in the sun".

A video posted on the club's Twitter account showed Brazilian players Luiz Adriano, Pedro Rocha and Fernando exercising during a training camp in the United Arab Emirates.

The same phrase is heard during the video, apparently spoken by Spartak and Russian Federation defender Georgy Dzhikiya.

The tweet has since been deleted.

"We're all one big family", Dzhikiya said, before Luiz Adriano added: "This is my friend, my brother. a legend of Spartak".

It's the third time Spartak have been at the centre of racism controversy in a matter of months.

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The antidiscrimination group the FARE Network, which investigates racism issues for European soccer's governing body UEFA, criticized Spartak.

Spartak player Leonid Mironov is already facing a UEFA racism charge over alleged racist abuse of Liverpool's Rhian Brewster during a Youth League game in December.

Russian Federation host the 2018 World Cup finals in June but some players have raised concerns over their suitability given that racist incidents remain commonplace in the country's domestic league. UEFA ordered them to partially close their academy stadium for a fixture after a section of fans were guilty of racist behaviour towards Nigeria-born Liverpool striker Bobby Adekanye.

The club tweeted on Friday to announce that Spartak player Georgi Dzhikiya would be taking over the official account though it is unknown whether it was the defender who wrote the video's caption. References like this show how some minorities are seen by some in the country.

"It is a reminder, that along with the whole of football, there is significant work to do to eradicate racism of all forms from the sport".

Powar noted that the club's fans had recently been punished for Islamophobic chants.