Edinson Cavani has been hit with a three-match ban after the Manchester United striker used the word ‘negrito’ in a social media post.
He will now miss the Premier League game against Aston Villa, EFL Cup semi-final against Manchester City and FA Cup clash with Watford – leaving him free to return to action at Liverpool on January 17.
A statement from United read: ‘As he has stated, Edinson Cavani wasn’t aware that his words could have been misconstrued and he sincerely apologised for the post and to anyone who was offended.
‘Despite his honest belief that he was simply sending an affectionate thank you in response to a congratulatory message from a close friend, he chose not to contest the charge out of respect for, and solidarity with, The FA and the fight against racism in football.
‘While it is clear that context and intent are key factors, we note that the independent Regulatory Commission was required to impose a minimum three game suspension.
‘The club trusts that the independent Regulatory Commission will make it clear in its written reasons that Edinson Cavani is not a racist, nor was there any racist intent in relation to his post.’