The Football Association’s disciplinary unit has interviewed both Roberto Firmino and Mason Holgate as they look to come to a conclusion after the Brazilian was accused of racism.
Earlier this month, Everton defender Mason Holgate accused Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino of racially abusing him during the Merseyside derby at Anfield.
On Friday, it will have been three weeks since the allegations were leveled at the no.9 but the FA is keen to take their time as their priority is to come to the right conclusion rather than to move quickly on the matter.
The incident allegedly occurred after Holgate aggressively pushed Firmino over the advertising hoardings. The Brazilian reacted angrily and rushed to confront the young Everton defender but was stopped by Bobby Madley. He has been accused by Holgate of calling him a n****r.
An FA statement, issued earlier this month, said: “The FA can confirm that referee Bobby Madley was made aware of an allegation during the Liverpool versus Everton game at Anfield last night and has subsequently reported this to The FA, which will now begin making enquiries into the matter.”
Mark Ogden reports for ESPN that both Firmino and Holgate have been interviewed by The Football Association’s disciplinary unit and that the investigation is “making progress”. Match officials and players from both teams are either in the process of being interviewed or have already been.
So far, the FA are unwilling to put a timescale on the probe into the allegation to give them the best chance of reaching the right conclusion.
When Luis Suarez was accused of racism by Patrice Evra in 2011, it took the FA over four weeks to charge the Liverpool forward and an additional month before he was actually handed an eight-match ban and a 40,000 fine.
Such an outcome would have debilitating consequences for Liverpool’s system given Firmino’s importance to Jurgen Klopp coupled with the fact that Philippe Coutinho joined Barcelona earlier this month.