U.S. star Jozy Altidore has said he will "pray" for those who subjected him to racist abuse during a Dutch cup game Tuesday.
The 23-year-old American international was the target of racist chanting during AZ Alkmaar's 5-0 win at nine-man Den Bosch.
Referee Reinold Wiedemeijer suspended the game during the first half following "jungle sounds chanted at Altidore," according to AZ's official twitter feed. But AZ players, including Altidore, persuaded him not to.
Wiedemeijer asked host club Den Bosch to put a message over the public address system, warning the crowd he would stop the match if the abuse carried on.
The contest was also briefly stopped after the interval after home fans threw snowballs at the linesmen.
Altidore was adamant the game should not be stopped and in a post-match interview with Dutch television he explained his stance.
He said: "It's a bit disappointing that these things still happen at this time but what are you going to do?
"You just have to hope that these people find a way to improve themselves. You can only pray for them.
"I feel like as a football player that I have an obligation, to my team, to my club, to my family to not react to things like this.
"I want to show them that club stands better than that and that I was raised better than that than respond to such ridiculous behaviour.
"It's a bit disappointing because you would hope as human beings that humanity can grow from these types of times.
"But at the end of the day, it's still alive racism and all we can do is try and educate ourselves and the young kids coming up to be better than that.
"All I can do is pray for them and hope they become better people."
Altidore, who scored from the penalty spot during the contest, also insisted he would not rise to those who had insulted him from the stands.
He added: "I'm not going to fight them. They just have some issues and need some help. You can only pray for them and hope they get better.
"We were in a good rhythm and it was important for us to keep going. I think we started the New Year right and you have to look at the bigger picture."
AZ soccer director and former U.S. midfield player Earnier Stewart, also spoke of his disgust, telling Dutch television's Eredivisie Live: "It is terribly sad that this can happen for those involved and for lovers of football in the Netherlands.
"You hear that and wonder what on earth is going on.''
Stewart also revealed that Den Bosch officials are "ashamed'' of the fans involved. The club told fans to stop the chants over the public address system, but that failed to stop a small section of supporters.
Alkmaar player Viktor Elm added: "The fans that misbehaved towards Altidore should be ashamed.
"I, like everybody else, am really disappointed in these supporters. It is a bad time for professional football. It is not something I have experienced in my career before.
"Jozy handled it really well. He has not been tempted to respond. He was emotional after his penalty."
Meanwhile, in Italy, Lazio booked its place in the final of the Coppa Italia courtesy of a 2-1 win over Juventus.
With the tie poised at 1-1 following last week's first leg in Turin, Lazio took the lead through Alvaro Gonzalez's header.
The home side looked set for its first final since 2009, but Juventus grabbed a dramatic equalizer in the 91st minute when Arturo Vidal lashed home.