Leicester City have spoken to midfielder Papy Mendy after he posted an Instagram story, which has since been deleted, in support of his Senegal team-mate Idrissa Gueye.
According to widespread reports, Gueye was not named in Paris Saint-Germain’s squad to play Montpellier at the weekend because he didn’t want to back the initiative which is in aid of International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia on May 17.
On Wednesday morning, Mendy posted a photo of Gueye playing for Senegal with the caption, “De tout coeur avec toi” — which translates to, “With you all the way”.
Crystal Palace’s Cheikhou Kouyate and Watford’s Ismalia Sarr also appeared to show their support towards their Senegal team-mate after Gueye’s apparent refusal to play.
Palace manager Patrick Vieira said earlier on Wednesday he would speak to Kouyate after the midfielder also posted in support of Gueye.
WIth respect to Mendy’s Instagram story, a Leicester spokesman said: “The club has spoken with Papy and discussed the potential interpretation of the post, which has since been removed.
“It was not his intention to cause offence or to suggest he shares views that conflict with the club’s long-established commitment to equality and inclusion.
“Leicester City Football Club stands firmly as an ally of the LGBTQ+ community and is proud of the work it has undertaken in recent years, aimed at helping to create a safe and inclusive environment and educating our people on the importance of allyship.
“Working closely with our Foxes Pride supporter group and other equality stakeholders in the game and throughout our communities, great strides have been made in making Leicester City a football club for everyone.
“Our commitment to achieving that through ongoing education, action and allyship remains as strong as ever.”
The controversy comes in the same week Blackpool forward Jake Daniels became the UK’s first male professional footballer to come out publicly as gay since Justin Fashanu.
Daniels, 17, told Sky Sports he “wanted people to hear his story”.
“Now is the right time to do it,” he said on Monday. “I feel like I am ready to tell people my story. I want people to know the real me.
“I have been thinking for a long time about how I want to do it, when I want to do it. I know now is the time. I am ready to be myself, be free and be confident with it all.”
(Photo: Plumb Images/Leicester City FC via Getty Images)