Dutch Footballer Suspended Over Pro-Palestinian Instagram Message

Anwar El Ghazi, a winger for German club Mainz, has been suspended for uploading a now-deleted social media post about the war in Gaza

According to The Mail Online:

The Dutchman was previously linked with a shock summer move to Manchester United amid the club’s winger crisis and El Ghazi at the time being a free agent.

He eventually joined Mainz on a two-year contract until 2025 but has now been suspended from training and games by the club over his post in what is a rare incident relating to content players publish on social media.

In a statement posted on Tuesday, the club explained: ‘Prior to making this decision, the club and the player had engaged in an in-depth discussion.

‘Mainz 05 respect the fact that there are varying perspectives on the decades-long, complex conflict in the Middle East.

‘However, the club are distancing themselves from the content of the social media post in question, as it does not align with the values of the club.’

The ongoing conflict in the Middle East has largely split opinion, with El Ghazi one of the rare players to break their silence by weighing in on the topic in an online Instagram post.

The 28-year-old formerly featured in the Premier league for both Aston Villa and Everton but has moved to Germany in search of more regular first-team opportunities.

Part of El Ghazi’s social media update stated: ‘Palestine will be free’ before he removed the post from his Instagram story.

He has made three appearances in the German top-flight so far this season and registered one assist but now faces an indefinite spell absent from Bo Svensson’s team.

Bayern Munich are similarly investigating a member of their squad over similar social media activity after full-back Noussair Mazraoui shared a pro-Palestinian video online.

‘Bayern immediately contacted Noussair Mazraoui after his Instagram posts on Sunday’ a club statement told the DPA German news agency.

‘After his return [from national team duty], a detailed personal meeting with the club’s management in Munich is planned.’

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