It is making headlines around the world. The Senegalese midfielder of Paris Saint Germain, Idrissa Gueye, would have refused to play on Saturday May 14 against Montpellier because of the flocking in the colors of the homosexual flag. An “event” which obviously caused different protagonists to react: politicians, federation, compatriots, club… Back to the case of the week.
The absence of Gueye in the Paris workforce
As Paris Saint Germain prepares to go to Montpellier on Saturday, a player is present in the list of summoned, but, a few hours before the match, no longer appears: Idrissa Gueye. The Senegalese, present in the stands, has however been one of the key elements of Mauricio Pochettino this season. The day after PSG’s victory at La Mosson (4-0), in a 37th day of Ligue 1 placed under the sign of the fight against homophobia, the media learned that the player was not present in the workforce because he would have refused to wear a jersey with the flocked number in rainbow colors sky of the LGBT community.
As part of the World Day Against Homophobia on May 17, the #League 1 mobilizes. The Parisian jerseys take up the rainbow flag, symbol of peace, diversity and symbol par excellence of the LGBT movement.#MHSCPSG pic.twitter.com/TdFU7f2zZj
— Paris Saint Germain (@PSG_inside) May 14, 2022
A year earlier, on May 17, 2021, the player had claimed gastroenteritis for not playing on this special day. This time, he was dismissed at his request, for “personal reasons” and not physical, explained coach Mauricio Pochettino at a press conference.
Chain disapproval, PSG dissociates itself from its player
“He had already done it last year. There is little doubt about his intentions.” It is with these words that Bertrand Lambert, president of Panam Boyz and Girlz United, a club open to diversity, reacted to the case with AFP. Once the news broadcast, the information went beyond the framework of the athlete. Roxana Maracineanunow a former minister delegate in charge of sports, found “regrettable” this boycott. But a reaction was expected above all: that of the club.
Almost 48 hours after the events, Monday evening, PSG dissociated itself from the actions of its player in a press release: “Idrissa Gueye was not in the group for individual and personal reasons., started the capital club. And to remember: “PSG has always been keen to fight all forms of discrimination and did so again this weekend.”
Senegal supports its champion
African champion at the start of the year with Senegal, Idrissa Gueye has become a hero in the country. And this act clearly did not tarnish his reputation in the country. On the contrary even. In this predominantly Muslim country, homosexuality is punishable by one to five years’ imprisonment and a fine of 152 to more than 2,000 euros. It was defended up to the highest echelons of the state. Starting with the president, Macky Sall, who asked on Twitter to what the “religious beliefs” of Gueye are respected. Sports Minister Matar Bâ also defended the Teranga Lions player in a press conference on Monday: “When you sign, it’s to play football, it’s not to promote anything or put aside your beliefs.”
I support Idrissa Gana Gueye. His religious convictions must be respected.
— Macky Sall (@Macky_Sall) May 17, 2022
Beyond politics, his selection teammates gave him their support on social networks. Abdou Diallo, his teammate at PSG, posted a photo alongside Idrissa Gueye where he wrote: “We all know who you are”. Ditto for the midfielder of Crystal Palace Cheikhou Kouyaté, who evokes a “champion with a big heart, a champion in his behavior, a champion in his generosity” and to add that he “will remain a champion in his eyes”. The latter has, moreover, with these messages of support, attracted the wrath of Eagles supporters who demand that Kouyaté “don’t play the last game”.
Idrissa Gueye summoned by the FFF ethics council
Four days after the player’s absence from Montpellier, the French Football Federation decided to react on Wednesday via its national ethics council. He speaks directly to the player, summons him and asks him to explain his refusal to participate. “Sor these speculations are unfounded and we invite you without delay to express yourselves in order to silence these rumors. For example, we invite you to accompany your message with a photo of you wearing the jersey in question.advised the CNE to the player in a letter.
The committee is also intransigent: “In this case, we ask you to realize the significance of your gesture and the very serious error committed.writes the ethics committee. By refusing to participate in this collective operation, you are in fact validating discriminatory behavior, the refusal of the other, and not only against the LGBTQI + community.