Monday 18 December 2017

Nicolas Anelka: I'm not anti-Semitic or racist

The French striker calls on the FA to drop charges against him.

West Bromwich Albion's French striker Nicolas Anelka and his controversial goal celebration against West Ham
West Bromwich Albion's French striker Nicolas Anelka and his controversial goal celebration against West Ham

West Brom striker Nicolas Anelka has taken to Facebook to claim that he isn’t anti-Semitic amid allegations of racist behaviour.

Anelka was charged by the FA on Tuesday for making the 'quenelle' gesture against West Ham, which is widely considered to be anti-Semitic.

The 34-year-old is also accused of an “aggravated breach” of the regulations because it is claimed the gesture “included a reference to ethnic origin and/or race and/or religion and/or belief”.

Following on from a video link he posted yesterday on Twitter featuring Roger Cukierman, the head of Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions and vice-president of the World Jewish Congress, today he expressed his innocence on his Facebook page.

As well as stating he is not a racist or anti-Semitic, the French striker added he had the backing of Cukierman.

“Mr. Cukierman, president of CRIF (Conseil Représentatif France Jewish Institutions), has explained it very clearly that my quenelle could not be considered to be anti-Semitic!”

"I therefore ask the English FA to kindly remove the charge made against me. And I repeat, I am not anti-Semitic or racist."

Anelka has until 6pm tomorrow to respond to the charge officially.

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