Manchester United winner Edinson Cavani faces a three-match ban for a ‘racist’ celebratory post-match commentary.
The FA’s disciplinary beaks launched an investigation into the Instagram post after the Uruguayan scored twice to lead Manchester United to a 3-2 return win after trailing 2-0 at Southampton.
Cavani’s response to a fan on Instagram sparked a backlash on social media – with some calling his language racist.
A fan posted “Asi te queiro Matador” in Spanish, which translates to: “I love you, Matador!”
Cavani replied on his Instagram story: “Gracias N ******! ”
The word is said to be Spanish for ‘little black’ and the forward, 33, later removed the image from his Instagram story.
His answer seems certain to bring at least one accusation and one warning from the FA – and potentially a suspension of a “minimum” of three matches.
Former Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, Cavani’s attacking partner for Uruguay, received an eight-game ban for using the same word during his on-pitch clash with United’s Patrice Evra in 2011.
The FA launched a new crackdown on discriminatory behavior in August, following social media comment bans against Bernardo Silva of Manchester City and Dele Alli of Tottenham.
Under the new guidelines, the FA must act where “discriminatory” language has been used.
The FA rules, sent to all clubs and players – via the PFA – state: “Where an infraction is in writing only or via any means of communication, the absolute minimum match-based sanction in such cases will be three games.
United declined to comment when contacted by SunSport, but it is understood that they believe the comments were made in an affectionate context.
Old Trafford bosses have pointed to the allegedly widespread use of the term in South America, although they have confirmed that Cavani will now be informed that it could be misinterpreted.
This position, however, is unlikely to find favor with the FA, which believes it is vital to punish any discriminatory language.
Wembley bosses began their investigation when made aware of the comments and now have until close of business Wednesday to decide whether to charge or contact Cavani for his comments.
The FA would then have until next Monday to actually issue the accusation, a hearing then being scheduled before December 21, with a commission to determine any necessary sanction.
But while Cavani only joined United in September, the crackdown applies to all players and United will fear the loss of their new strike star for the Christmas schedule.
Suarez was fined £ 40,000 by the FA for using the word n ******, but later wrote in his autobiography that it had a different meaning in Spanish.
It translates to “little black” in Spanish and is not generally used as a derogatory insult.
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