LONDON (Reuters) – Police are investigating potentially racist tweets towards Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli after the Italian used the social media site to poke fun at Manchester United following their 5-3 loss at Leicester City on Sunday.
The often outspoken Balotelli, long the subject of racist abuse in Italy, wrote “Man Utd LOL” (laughing out loud) – prompting a deluge of negative replies with some Twitter users using the term “monkey”. The posts later disappeared.
“We can confirm officers are looking into offensive comments made on Twitter about Mario Balotelli earlier today,” Merseyside Police, the force for Liverpool, said on Twitter.
Liverpool and Manchester United are among the Premier League’s most bitter foes while Balotelli also previously played for United’s neighbours Manchester City.
While struggling United went down to promoted Leicester despite leading by two goals twice, faltering Liverpool lost 3-1 at West Ham United on Saturday.