Dec 28, 2013, 11:35 AM EDT
Following his first two Premier League goals since 2011, West Bromwich Albion striker Nicholas Anelka should have been celebrating a good day at the office following his sides 3-3 draw at West Ham on Saturday.
However now he’s having to defend himself, as controversy hangs over the Frenchman following what looked like a ‘quenelle’ salute, made famous by French comedian Dieudonne and linked to anti-Semitism.
After the match, the Baggies caretaker manager Keith Downing said the striker was merely paying homage to his friend and the gesture wasn’t anything but a tribute to Dieudonne.
“I’m aware of it but it has got nothing to do what is being said,” Downing said when asked about the incident. “It is dedicated to a French comedian he knows very, very well. He uses it in his act and I think speculation can be stopped now, it is absolute rubbish really.”
Downing also revealed that Anelka has been taken back by the reaction to his gesture.
“He [ Anelka] is totally unaware of what the problems were or the speculation that has been thrown around, he is totally surprised by it.”
Following a huge number of complaints the English Football Association is investigating the gesture by Anelka and French sport Minister Valerie Fourneyron criticized the 34-year-old for his actions. While anti-discrimination body, Kick It Out, is in contact with their partners in England and France over the incident and offered support to the FA in its inquiries.
Apr 23, 2014, 8:04 AM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 9:14 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 7:51 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 6:28 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 4:55 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 4:47 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 4:06 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 2:17 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 1:56 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 12:58 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 12:02 PM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 11:20 AM EDT
The celebration has now cost Anelka a job, West Bromwich Albion some sponsors and Sagbo some money.
Apr 22, 2014, 11:05 AM EDT
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Apr 22, 2014, 9:10 AM EDT
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