The FA will this week talk to Everton defender Mason Holgate and Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino amid racial abuse claims which stemmed from the Merseyside derby last week.
After an unnecessary shove over the advertising hoardings from Holgate, Firmino was understandably incensed and raced to confront the 21-year-old and is understood to have sworn at him in Portuguese.
However, Holgate has accused Firmino of racially abusing him and has escalated the matter to the point that the FA are now involved and investigating the matter.
Several angles show Firmino saying the words “Es maluco, filho da puta?” This translates in English to “Are you crazy, you son of a b***h?” but Firmino may have said something which was hidden from television coverage which resulted in Holgate reacting in the way he did.
Although Firmino might have said something racially offensive to Holgate, it seems unlikely given the fact that referee Bobby Madley was stood between the pair trying to pacify them. Had he heard any racial abuse from Firmino, surely it would have seen the Brazilian shown a red card?
As things stand, however, both clubs have declined the opportunity to comment on the situation and will wait for an outcome before speaking out. Liverpool and Everton are respecting the FA’s investigation process and will co-operate with whatever it takes to reach a conclusion on the matter.
According to the Daily Mail, The FA will chat to both Holgate, the accuser, and Firmino, the accused, in a bid to ascertain what was said and to put an end to an ugly incident which has taken the gloss off a fabulous FA Cup third round tie.
Many on social media are curious as to what should happen if Roberto Firmino is found to be absolutely clear of any racial abuse. With Holgate vociferously accusing the Liverpool striker of racism, surely trumping up such a charge is a serious offense and should be punished if found guilty?
Of course, it’s very easy to pretend that you misheard in the frenetic mania of a Merseyside derby but accusing someone of racism can often cause irreparable harm to one’s reputation – regardless of the outcome.
Comment below what you think of the whole mess. Is Firmino in danger of being fined and banned or has Holgate fabricated the whole charge?