Friday, December 23, 2011

Suarez T-Shirts Spark Angry Response

Liverpool's decision to wear t-shirts in support of Luis Suarez before their game at Wigan Athletic on Wednesday has been criticized by some prominent black footballers.

Former Manchester United and Aston Villa centre-back Paul McGrath was one of the first to react, and he was disappointed that the club have chosen to support a player found guilty of using racist language in such a way.

Suarez is, pending an appeal, facing an eight-match ban and £40,000 fine for an incident involving Patrice Evra.

"As an ex-footballer having experienced racist comments throughout my career I was saddened to see Liverpool players wear those t-shirts last night," McGrath said on Twitter. "I would have been much happier if they had worn anti-racist t-shirts."

Blackburn Rovers striker Jason Roberts also took to the social networking site to say: "The stance on the Suarez issue from LFC has bemused me. Are United going to print Evra shirts now? Some issues are bigger than football."

Ex-Newcastle defender Olivier Bernard told Sky Sports: "I really didn't think it was fine to wear the T-shirts. I can understand the club's side of it, but in society we can't accept racism and give support to a player who has used racist words.

"It's not okay to use racist language and the message they sent out yesterday was a bit wrong. I don't mind them giving support to Mr. Suárez, but I just think it's a bit wrong to wear the T-shirt because that means they have allowed racist language. I just don't understand it."

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