Liverpool legend John Barnes has branded the FA’s decision to charge Manchester United striker Edinson Cavani with misconduct as “ridiculous“.
The 118-cap Uruguay international was investigated by the FA after he shared an Instagram post with the phrase “gracias negrito” following a 3-2 win over Southampton in the Premier League.
Cavani came on at half-time, scored twice and set up United’s other goal in a stunning comeback for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Cavani deleted the post and apologised after he was made aware that the term could be deemed offensive, insisting that it was used as “an affectionate greeting to a friend”.
However, it still breached the FA’s guidelines that were introduced during the summer, on the grounds that it referenced race or skin colour.
However, Liverpool legend John Barnes has shared his thoughts on the situation after he was asked for his opinion on Twitter, and has branded the decision as “ridiculous“.
Any terminology that refers to race or skin colour is always going to divide opinion regardless of the context in which it is used, but Barnes clearly feels the FA have overstepped the mark in this instance.
Barnes is often outspoken about the issue of race in football and felt that there had also been an overreaction to the recent scandal involving a Romanian fourth official in PSG and Istanbul Basaksehir’s Champions League clash.
Manchester United, meanwhile, have continued to defend Cavani’s actions – which suggests they may look to fight the charge. In an official club statement, they said…
“Edinson and the club were clear that there was absolutely no malicious intent behind the message, which he deleted and apologised for, as soon as he was informed that it could have been misconstrued. The player and the club will now consider the charge and respond to the FA accordingly.”
It remains to be seen how Manchester United and Cavani respond to the charge, but for the time being it’s clear we haven’t heard the last of this saga just yet.