POLICE have arrested a Villarreal supporter suspected of throwing a banana at Barcelona defender Dani Alves last weekend.
The 26-year-old fan, reportedly named David Campaya Lleo, allegedly threw the banana in a racist assault during Sunday’s 3-2 win at the El Madrigal stadium.
Alves responded by eating the banana, earning worldwide admiration and support.
Social media has since exploded with images of celebrities, athletes and members of the public posing with bananas in an impromptu anti-racism campaign.
The hashtag ‘we are all monkeys’ took Twitter by storm, after Barcelona teammate Neymar posted a photo of himself and his toddler son posing with bananas.
The Italian prime minister, Matteo Renzi, also joined in the campaign, sharing a banana with Italian national football coach Cesare Prandelli.
Alves said he was shocked by the enormity of the public’s response and support.
“I hope that this campaign can be an alert to ban this kind of attitude from football altogether,” he said.
“I hope the debate about racial prejudice will not fade away, but stays on permanently and not be restricted only to football.”
Villarreal earlier reported that the fan had had his season ticket withdrawn and been given a lifetime ban from the club.