REVEALED: FA gave Cavani ban for racism despite proof of nickname

REVEALED: The FA were STUNNED by Manchester United’s lack of media training for Edinson Cavani and accepted his claim ‘negrito’ was a friend’s lifelong nickname… but STILL banned him for three games for ‘racist’ Instagram post

  • Edinson Cavani was handed a three-game ban for using the term ‘negrito’ 
  • The Manchester United forward used the term to describe his lifelong friend
  • The FA still gave Cavani the ban despite seeing proof that this was a nickname
  • The FA were also shocked that Cavani had not received media training by United 

The FA gave Edinson Cavani a three-match ban and £100,000 fine for using an offensive term even though they saw proof that ‘negrito’ was a nickname for his lifelong friend. 

The Manchester United forward received the sanction for racism on New Year’s Eve after using the term in an Instagram post in response to his friend’s online congratulatory message after scoring twice against Southampton in December. 

In the written reasons published by the FA, English football’s governing body received a video statement from Cavani’s friend, Pablo Fernandez, confirming this was a long-term nickname used by the striker, along with several historic WhatsApp messages to prove this.

The FA handed Edinson Cavani a three-match ban even though they saw proof that the term ‘negrito’ was a long-term nickname for his friend, Pablo Fernandez

Cavani used the term after Mr Fernandez congratulated him for scoring against Southampton in December

Mr Fernandez, who was described in the report as ‘a man of Caucasian appearance similar to (Cavani)’, admitted in the video statement that he did not take any offence with the social media remark and that he even uses it to describe his own son. 

However, the FA concluded that any follower of English football without knowledge of South American culture would find the terms offensive and that Cavani did indeed break FA rule E3, which punishes anyone using ‘insulting words or behaviour’. 

The FA Commission did point out that they agreed there was no racial or offensive intent in the post by Cavani.

The FA were also left surprised that Cavani was not given any media training by Manchester United despite having an Instagram following of 7.9million. 

Mr Fernandez (left) claimed he did not take offence by the term Cavani used on social media

The report also reveals how both the player and the club have taken steps to ensure Cavani has a better understanding of social media responsibilities. 

The decision to ban Cavani was met with hostility by several Uruguayan players, including Luis Suarez, who accused the FA of making a ‘true discriminatory act’ in banning the 33-year-old.

The strongly worded statement from the Uruguayan Football Players Association read: ‘The sanction shows the English Football Association’s biased, dogmatic and ethnocentric vision that only allows a subjective interpretation to be made from its particular and excluding conclusion, however flawed it may be.

‘Edinson Cavani has never committed any conduct that could be interpreted as racist. He merely used a common expression in Latin America to affectionately address a love one or close friend. 

Uruguay players slammed the FA, insisting they’d committed a ‘true discriminatory act’ 

Luis Suarez gave his emphatic support for the letter with this reaction on social media

‘To sustain that the only way to obtain a valid interpretation in life is that which lies in the minds of the managers of the English Football Association is actually a true discriminatory act, which is completely reprehensible and against Uruguayan culture.

‘We would therefore like to publicly defend Edinson Cavani’s impeccable character and of course our country’s culture. We are all against any kind of discrimination; however unfortunately, through its sanction, the English Football Association expresses absolute ignorance and disdain for a multicultural vision of the world.

‘It has not punished one person, but also our whole culture, our way of life, which is truly a discriminatory and racist act.’ 

United confirmed last week that Uruguayan striker Cavani chose not to contest the charge out of respect for the FA and the ‘fight against racism in football’. 

Cavani accepted the ban but said ‘I expressed myself according to my culture and way of life’ 

‘I do not want to extend much in this uncomfortable moment,’ Cavani wrote on Instagram. ‘I want to share with you that I accept the disciplinary sanction knowing that I am foreign to English language customs, but I do not share the point of view.

‘I apologise if I offended someone with an expression of affection towards a friend, nothing further in my intention. Those who know me know that my effort always seeks the simplest joy and friendship!

‘I appreciate the countless expressions of support and affection. My heart is at peace because I know that I always expressed myself with affection according to my culture and way of life. I send you a sincere hug.’

Cavani has served two out of his three matches as part of his punishment, with the final match being Saturday’s FA Cup third-round tie with Watford.  

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