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The Football Association (FA) panel accepted that Edinson Cavani did not mean to offend with a post on social media, which resulted in the player receiving a three-match penalty.
An independent three-man regulatory commission found that Manchester United striker Cavani should only be imposed with the minimum penalty possible for responding to a friend’s compliments on Instagram.
Following his decisive double in a 3-2 Premier League victory at Southampton on November 29, Cavani used a Spanish word that is often used as a term of endearment in Latin America. He later deleted the post and apologized when it was made clear to him that the phrase could be construed as having racist overtones in English.
When the FA released written reasons for Cavani’s punishment on Thursday, it was suggested that the 33-year-old, who arrived at Old Trafford in October, should have received media training from United.
Among the explanations of the verdict, the FA revealed: “The commission quickly concluded that it was satisfied that there was no intention on the part of the player to be discriminatory or offensive in any way.
“The commission was satisfied that the player wrote his response in affectionate thanks to a message from his Uruguayan friend and that it was not designed or intended to be racist or offensive to his friend or to other people who read the content of the Instagram post. .
“Such conclusion was supported by all available evidence relevant to the circumstances in which the publication was made and taking into account the character and response of the player.”
Cavani was fined £ 100,000 and ordered to attend a mandatory face-to-face educational program, in addition to serving a three-game suspension.
The commission also stated: “In light of the player’s high profile in the game, his inability to speak English, and the fact that he was approaching eight million followers on Instagram, the commission was surprised that it had not been specifically implemented. such ‘training’ for the player by his club.
However, he acknowledged that United had “taken steps to ensure that the player better understands his responsibilities on social media.”