A Spanish journalist sent a statement of ‘regret’ to Ansu Fati, a famous football player from Barcelona club as the former compared the latter’s moves on the field with a gazelle and an unlawful street vendor who’s absconding from police.
On Tuesday, Salvador Sostres, a journalist from ABC, stated the win of Barcelona over Ferencvaros by writing that, “Ansu when running has something of a gazelle, or a very young, black street vendor running away from police.”
The statement by Sostres welcomed an outburst of fury on social media platforms and the concern over racism was revived.
Antione Griezmann, a teammate of Ansu condemned the portrayal by the journalist. He tweeted, “Ansu is an exceptional young man who deserves the same respect as any human being. No to racism and no to bad manners.”
ABC issued an apology by Sostres
The testimony of regret was published by ABC on Thursday. Sostres said, “My intention was to praise the beauty of Ansu’s movement and his talent as a very young player.”
“Some expressions were understood as racist insults. Nothing was further from my intention, nor the very favourable opinion of the player that I have expressed in all the match reports I have written since his debut. I deeply lament the misunderstanding and I ask forgiveness if anyone has felt offended.”
Fati, a black player who is one of Barcelona’s brightest players, is a native of Guinea Bissau and came to Spain with his family when he was aged 6 years.
Barcelona stated that they wanted to file a lawsuit against the newspaper and the journalist. However, Sostres’s apology has made them rethink their course of action.
Following the coronavirus pandemic, when football started again in the United Kingdom, over 40% Black players were abused due to their race on social media, as per the Professional Footballers’ Association Charity. Man City’s Raheem Sterling has been prompted to take an action.