The headline was published on Thursday alongside pictures of Inter Milan’s Romelu Lukaku and Roma’s Chris Smalling.

The two football players will battle it out on Friday in a match between their teams for Italy’s Serie A competition.

The headline was widely condemned by clubs, the media and the general public.

“Football is passion, culture and brotherhood. We are and will always be against all forms of discrimination,” Roma’s English-language Twitter account posted.

Inter rivals AC Milan also said on Twitter it was “totally unacceptable to see such casual ignorance on racism” and they would “not stay silent on this issue”.

Corriere dello Sport’s editor, Ivan Zazzaroni, who has now deactivated his Twitter accoount, claimed in a follow-up article on the paper’s website that the headline intended to celebrate the “magnificent wealth of diversity” in Italian football.

“It’s an innocent article, perfectly argued by [journalist] Roberto Perrone, that has been made poisonous by those who have poison inside them,” Zazzaroni wrote.

Lukaku’s agent, Federico Pastorello, told Sky Sports News that authorities are not treating racism seriously as there have recently been recent similar episodes in Champions League and Serie A games.

He added that the problem is part of a broader cultural issue across Italian society.

“Honestly being Italian I’m really ashamed to read a title like that,” Pastorello told Sky Sports News. 

“[Lukaku]’s very sensitive on that problem.

“He’s facing it every time with strong power, not more for him but for all the other players who may be weaker than him.”

The headline comes days after all 20 Serie A clubs wrote an open letter asking fans for help in combatting racism in Italian football, in the wake of persistent racist chanting from the stands of Italian stadiums that has disrupted a string of matches, particularly this year.