MLS can’t verify Taxi Fountas used slur; calls allegation ‘credible’

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DC United star Taxi Fountas will not be training from MLS after the league’s investigation found no conclusive evidence that the opponents on Sept. 18 Sept. 18

The league said Monday that Miami defender Aimé Mabika’s claim was “credible” but could not “independently verify” it. MLS also said it is not credible “Fontas’ claim that he said anything at that moment – acceptance or otherwise. The video of the incident clearly shows Mabika suddenly reacting to something he believed he heard from Fontas.

As part of the investigation, the league said, it interviewed several people and reviewed video footage and audio recordings, but could not determine “what Fontas said at that moment.”

Mabika had accused Fountas of using the n-word during an incident with Damion Lowe in the second half. Lowe, who is Jamaican, and Mabika, who is Zambian, are black. The source, which is called in Greek, is white.

Miami refused to resume playing until Fountain was removed from the game. United’s Wayne Rooney will be obliged.

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“I’m not used to using the word accused,” Fountas wrote on Instagram days later. “I denounce that despicable insult to the race and I do not use it. We had a heated discussion in the field. But neither were they racially abused. I firmly reject racism in all its forms. it is despised.”

Referee Ismail Elfath told the pool reporter that at the time no official had heard racist or insulting language and that no one had been detected during the video review.

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As previously scheduled, Fontas then traveled to Greece to play twice for the national team. The state was due to return for the next two games of the MLS season, but citing the plight of Fontes and his family, Rooney granted him additional time.

Fountas, United’s only All-Star selection, is under contract through 2024. This year, he had a career-high 12 goals and added three assists in 21 appearances.

In a statement, United officials said they “assessed and accepted the findings of the league’s investigation, and concluded that the act in question could not be confirmed after several interviews with individuals involved and close to the incident.”

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MLS Sources have been interviewed at least twice, people familiar with the probe said, and have contacted Christian Benteke and Ravel Morrison, who are Black. Both of them fall into it at the same time. Several Miami players were also interviewed.

Sources was not available for comment Monday, but a person who spoke to him said the player was “relieved and eager to come.” Miami officials did not immediately comment.

MLS said it is reviewing its policies and practices related to allegations of wrongdoing and discriminatory remarks.

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In a separate investigation, MLS announced that it had fined Briton $25,000 for violating the diversity agreement the club set before Rooney in July. The first offense required a fine of up to $50,000.

As part of the new guidelines established in December, the teams are required to interview at least two candidates from the underrepresented group, including one Black candidate, for jobs in the technical staff, such as coach and general manager. (The previous rules mandate one of the candidates from those groups).

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Starting with a list of at least five candidates, United spoke with a black and Latino coach — both abroad, a person close to the situation said — but one of those conversations could not be considered a “final interview”; ” said the covenant.

One candidate, United said in a statement, went through the same process as the others. However, he added that the club then told team officials that he was not interested in the job that started mid-season.

“In light of this fact, the club is focusing its attention on the remaining candidate finalists,” United said.

The league, however, said United “remained obligated to bring an additional candidate from the underrepresented group into the “final pool” or request a waiver from MLS to minimize the circumstances that do not allow it to be done.”



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