The FA confirmed that Manchester United star Alejandro Garnacho would face no disciplinary action for his controversial social media post.
The FA found the explanation from Manchester United star Alejandro Garnacho “satisfactory” over the controversial social post involving Andre Onana. The young Argentine’s post suggested racial connotations for using two gorilla emojis as reference towards the United goalkeeper.
The 19-year-old deleted the celebratory post on his X (formerly known as Twitter) account to praise the heroics of Onana. The 27-year-old goalkeeper made a last-minute penalty save to secure a 0-1 victory against FC Copenhagen in the Champions League.
Onana defended Garnacho through an Instagram story after the FA’s involvement and asked that the matter should go no further.
The FA spokesperson (h/t Sky Sports) made a statement to express the satisfaction of the disciplinary community towards Garnacho’s explanation. They said:
“We are satisfied with Alejandro Garnacho’s explanation and the context it provides, so we will not be issuing disciplinary proceedings on this occasion. We have reminded the player of his responsibilities around social media posts and the use of emojis.”
Former United player Edilson Cavani received a fine and a three-match ban for using racially offensive terms. Former Liverpool player Luis Suarez received a fine and an eight-match ban for using a similar term. However, both the Uruguayan players did not have discriminatory intentions as they commonly used these words in their culture.
Furthermore, Manchester City star Bernardo Silva received a one-match ban for a tweet with racial connotation towards Benjamin Mendy. Mendy defended his former teammate during the FA’s process, but the FA still initiated the punishment.
The FA have taken strict actions against racial connotations before and this decision might raise questions about their consistency. However, inclusivity is an important part of accepting people who arrive from a culture where such connotations have no racial inclinations.
FA have been investigating into Garnacho’s social media post in which he used gorilla emojis over a picture of Andre Onana's penalty save.— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) October 26, 2023
Onana replies: “People can’t choose what I should be offended by. Garnacho meant power and strenght. This should go no further”. pic.twitter.com/k6kea9Iwgz
English Premier League invites players and staff from different cultures around the world and they can’t make such critical errors. It is the duty of the foreigners to educate themselves about the common words or gestures that have discriminatory suggestions.
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At the same time, the authority needs to give them a chance to rectify any unintentional error. Furthermore, the disciplinary actions need to be more consistent as many players have the right to question this double standard.
It is a common consensus among fans and experts that Garnacho did not have any malicious or discriminatory intentions. The 19-year-old is very young and he will learn from his error but he should consider himself very lucky. The use of “monkeys” has a very dark and lengthy history of discrimination towards black people. It is time to start being more sensitive to such situations.