Soccer union leader 'proud' of Milan protest

GRAHAM DUNBAR AP Sports Writer Published:

ZURICH (AP) -- Soccer union leader Theo van Seggelen says he's proud of the recent player protest against racist abuse by fans, but agrees with Sepp Blatter that leaving the field is not the answer.

FIFPro general secretary Van Seggelen tells The Associated Press that Kevin-Prince Boateng chose "the right moment" to lead off his AC Milan teammates and stop an exhibition last Friday.

The Dutch official acknowledges that "when it is the Champions League final, the circumstances are different."

Van Seggelen says "we have regulations for that. The referee is the only one who can stop the game."

Van Seggelen backed FIFA president Blatter who praised Boateng on Monday as "courageous" but added in his world player of the year ceremony speech that players walking off "cannot be the solution in the long term."