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Spanish FA may punish Espanyol fans' Shakira abuse in Barcelona Copa clash

Gerard Pique's wife Shakira was targeted by Espanyol fans in recent matches against Barcelona.

Spain's anti-violence committee for sports has asked the Spanish FA (RFEF) to take action over abusive chants from Espanyol fans towards Gerard Pique's wife Shakira during the recent Copa del Rey game against Barcelona.

Three Catalan capital derbies in 2016 have brought a number of incidents with alleged racist chants aimed at Barca star Neymar, a tunnel clash which saw Luis Suarez banned for two games, and Espanyol goalkeeper Pau Lopez escaped punishment after appearing to stamp on Lionel Messi.

Barcelona mayor Ada Colau has spoken of her disgust at the "horrible" chants aimed at Shakira during Barca's 2-0 Copa del Rey last-16 second leg victory on Jan. 13, while Spain's secretary of state for sport Miguel Cardenal also condemned the behaviour as "unacceptable."

During the second leg, Espanyol supporters unfurled a banner reading "Shakira es de todos" (Shakira is everyone's), which the mayor called sexist, saying: "There are certain macho cultural values that can generate macho violence."

But the referee's official report made no mention of either the chants or banners also insulting the Colombia-born popstar inside the Cornella El-Prat stadium, and no firm action has yet been taken by the football authorities.

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That may change now as the anti-violence committee at the Spanish sports ministry has asked the RFEF to look at what happened, as they are "the organisation responsible for organising this sporting competition and can take a decision."

After Barca's 0-0 La Liga draw at Espanyol on Jan. 2, Pique tweeted a video of fans singing abusive songs aimed at Shakira and young son Milan.

However, the RFEF is reported to be considering punishing Pique as it considers whether his social media use is bringing the game into disrepute.

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