On Monday morning West Bromwich released an updated statement on French striker Nicolas Anelka’s goal-celebration which has sparked outrage across the globe.
The clubs have stated that the Frenchman must not perform the gesture again, and Anelka has agreed to West Brom’s wishes.
Anelka, 34, performed the ‘quenelle’ gesture which is seen as anti-Semitic in his homeland of France, and is linked to his close friend and controversial French comedian Dieudonne.
The English Football Association has launched an investigation into Anelka’s gesture, which his club West Brom have revealed they’re fully cooperating with and also stated that until Anelka is charged, he will be be considered for first team action.
West Brom have asked Anelka to not repeat the celebration, and after fully explaining his reasons for performing the sign to both caretaker manager Keith Downing and Sporting and Technical Director Richard Garlick, the club released the following.
“The Club fully acknowledges that Nicolas’ goal celebration has caused offense in some quarters and has asked Nicolas not to perform the gesture again. Nicolas immediately agreed to adhere to this request. The Club is aware that The Football Association is investigating the matter and has offered its full co-operation. The Club will continue to make its own inquiries – a process which will remain confidential between the Club and Nicolas.”
With a minimum ban of five-games under FIFA and FA regulations likely to be heading Anelka’s way, it seems as though the Frenchman could face a lengthy spell on the sidelines despite only returning from a long-term injury to face West Ham on Saturday.
The Frenchman scored twice in a 3-3 draw versus the Hammers but his gesture, which has caused so much fury across global soccer and society, overshadowed anything he did with a soccer ball at his feet over the weekend.