Portuguese footballer Rafael Ramos, a defender for Brazilian side Corinthians, was arrested after the club's match with Internacional for allegedly using a racial slur against a rival player, the team said Sunday.
Inter midfielder Edenilson accused Ramos of calling him "macaco" — monkey — as the two vied for the ball during the second half of the clubs' 2-2 draw Saturday.
Ramos, who denied the accusation, was arrested by police following the league match in the southern city of Porto Alegre, then released on bail shortly after.
"The law requires such cases to be treated as 'in flagrante delicto,' with immediate detention," São Paulo-based Corinthians, who currently lead the Brazilian league table, said in a statement.
However, the club said they had "listened to Rafael Ramos's version of events, which was different from" Edenilson's, and decided to pay his bail of 10,000 reais (around US$2,000) so the 27-year-old could "remain free while defending himself in the investigation."
Corinthians "does not condone and indeed repudiates racism," said the club, which is known for its players' fight for civil rights during the final years of Brazil's 1964-1985 military dictatorship.
Edenilson, 32, said he had sought Ramos out after the match and demanded an apology. When the defender refused, he decided to file a complaint.
"He kept saying I must have heard him wrong," Edenilson, who has also played for the Brazilian national team, said on Instagram.
But "I know what I heard," he wrote.
Inter, currently eighth in the league, said it was "unacceptable that incidents of this kind still occur in 2022."
"There is no room for racism in our society," the club said in a statement.