West Bromwich Albion striker Jay Rodriguez has appointed a lip reader and leading QC as he steps up his fight against the Football Association’s charge of alleged racist abuse.
Rodriguez, 28, has been left stunned by the FA’s decision to charge him and is determined to clear his name after Brighton defender Gaetan Bong accused the striker of racially abusing him, reports the Telegraph.
The incident between Rodriguez and Bong happened during Albion’s 2-0 victory over the Seagulls earlier this year and the FA announced they would be charging the Baggies forward last week, saying he ‘used abusive and/or insulting words which included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race’.
Bong alleges Rodriguez said ‘you’re black and you stink’ during the Premier League clash.
The striker is desperate to prove his innocence and is ready to use a lip reader.
The former Southampton and Burnley player has until Friday to respond to the charge but will request a personal hearing as he bids to avoid a potential five-match ban.
More Albion news
West Brom defender Ali Gabr has finally received his work permit and could make his could make his debut this Saturday.
The Egyptian is currently out in Spain with the rest of Alan Pardew’s squad and will hope this weekend’s FA Cup tie with Southampton enables him to play for the first time since his transfer window loan from Zamalek.
Red tape around his work permit means he has been unavailable for selection in defeats at Manchester City, Southampton and Chelsea – but he has now received clearance.
The club have the option to make Gabr’s loan a permanent deal in the summer should they wish, though it remains to be seen as of yet whether he comes before fellow centre-half Gareth McAuley in the pecking order.
Albion face an uphill task to remain in the Premier League; they’re seven points adrift at the bottom of the table with eleven matches to play and their fate will likely be decided over the course of the next five league matches, starting with Huddersfield at home on Saturday week.
Source : BirminghamMail