Manchester United’s Alejandro Garnacho could face a Football Association sanction in relation to a social media post that used two gorilla emojis above a picture of André Onana after the goalkeeper’s injury-time penalty save against FC Copenhagen.
Garnacho deleted the post on X, formerly Twitter, once made aware of the racial connotations. The FA was made aware of the message and has contacted the 19-year-old Argentinian for his observations.
Onana defended Garnacho on social media on Thursday, writing: “People cannot choose what I should be offended by. I know exactly what @garnacho07 meant: power & strength. This matter should go no further.”
The picture posted by Garnacho showed Onana celebrating with teammates, including Garnacho, after he had palmed Jordan Larsson’s penalty wide with the last touch of the match to secure three vital Champions League points.
Garnacho could be charged by the FA for breaching its social media guidelines if it finds the post to be racially sensitive. The former United striker Edinson Cavani was banned for three matches and fined £100,000 in 2020 when he posted the comment “Gracias Negrito” to thank a fan.
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In November 2019 Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva was fined £50,000 and received a one-match ban for an “aggravated breach” of the FA’s code of conduct, after a tweet comparing the mascot for a Spanish confectionery firm to Benjamin Mendy appeared to reference the left-back’s race. Mendy had written to the commission to make it clear he took the tweet in the spirit intended by the player.