Moise Kean has thanked Evertonians for the banner unveiled prior to Saturday’s encounter with Manchester City showing solidarity with the Blues’ Italian striker.
Teenager Kean joined Everton in the summer from Juventus and was subjected to racist abuse playing for his former club in a Serie A fixture at Cagliari last season.
Blues fan group County Road Bobblers launched a social media campaign aimed at generating the funds for a banner in support of Kean soon after the international forward's arrival.
Their £1,000 target was comfortably surpassed and the banner – displaying an image of Kean and the words No Al Razzismo (No to Racism) – was unfurled in Goodison Park’s Howard Kendall Gwldays Street End before kick-off against City.
“It is a really important message and I want to say thank you to the fans,” Kean told evertontv, adding “Come on you Blues”.
Everton’s meeting with Premier League champions City was the Club’s designated annual Kick It Out fixture.
Both sets of players warmed up in Kick It Out t-shirts, with messages supporting the equality and inclusion organisation visible around the stadium.
Dave Wycherley of County Road Bobblers told evertontv: “I’d love to say I was surprised by the way it’s [banner campaign] been picked up but the Everton fans never surprise me when it comes to inclusion and diversity.
"These things just fly with Everton and it’s a credit to the Club and its supporters.”
“It’s massive for a young lad coming to a new country, he’s joined the People’s Club, the best place for him to come and he knows he’s part of our family now.
💙 | A statement that shouldn’t have to be made in 2019.— Everton (@Everton) September 28, 2019
Credit to the Everton family for this powerful message at today’s game. #noalrazzismo #notoracism #AllTogetherNow @kickitout @CBobblers1878 @GwladysSt1938 pic.twitter.com/v3ZQgunvqe
“Whether he’s a player or a fan, you’re all part of our big family and I think the message was clear to him today – we’re going to stand shoulder to shoulder against any issues including racism.
“It was totally overwhelming to see it in the Gwladys Street Stand, to see how big it was and the reception it received was special.”
Fellow County Road Bobbler Lee Mitchell added: “It was a brilliant feeling, it’s been a long process and taken a bit of time but to see the banner out there today was brilliant.
“It all started with one tweet and after that it just sort of blew up. We couldn’t have done it without the Everton fans and the help of the Club. We were just made up to see it and hopefully we got the message across.”
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HIGHLIGHTS: EVERTON 1-3 MANCHESTER CITY