Bernardo Silva has been hit with a one-match ban and a £50,000 fine for his tweet about Manchester City teammate Benjamin Mendy.
The FA released a statement today confirming the repercussions of a post Silva had earlier defended as being a “joke with a friend”. The tweet in question was a side-by-side image featuring a photo of a very young Mendy and a character displayed on packets of Conguitos, a brand of Spanish chocolate.
The tweet was quickly deleted following immediate backlash, to which Silva responded, “Can’t even joke with a friend these days... You guys...”
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Anti-discrimination campaign Kick It Out commented following the Portuguese midfielder’s post. “Racist stereotypes are never acceptable as ‘banter’, and we’re shocked that someone who is a role model to millions has failed to understand the discriminatory nature of his post.”
Kick It Out called for action to be taken over the situation. In their statement, the FA confirmed that Silva was in breach of FA Rule E3 – an insulting or improper mention of race and/or colour and/or ethnic origin.
The 25-year-old must also complete face-to-face education as well as the ban and fine.
“It is clear that the tweet was intended to be no more than a joke between close friends,” the FA reported. “However, this was not a private jocular communication between two friends.
“The post was on a social media platform exposed to the 600,000 followers of a high-profile and well-respected professional footballer.”
Silva will miss Manchester City’s Premier League fixture against Chelsea on November 24. The club are yet to comment on the decision.
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