Arsenal and Leeds condemn ‘vile abuse’ of Nicolas Pepe and Ezgjan Alioski on social media after Gunners ace sent off for headbutting Whites star
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Nov. 23, 2020
Arsenal and Leeds United have condemned abuse directed at Nicolas Pepe and Ezgjan Alioski following the incident between the pair during Sunday’s draw at Elland Road.
Pepe was sent off shortly after half-time for headbutting Alioski, who has been criticised for over-acting to ensure the Arsenal star’s dismissal.
Both players have since been abused on social media – with some of the comments directed at them of a racist manner.
Arsenal on Monday morning released a statement to condemn the abuse.
“We utterly condemn the vile abuse directed at Nicolas Pepe and Ezgjan Alioski on social media following our match against Leeds United,” read the statement.
“This is completely unacceptable and we will be working with the police and authorities to do everything we can to trace and prosecute the culprits.”
Leeds added in their own statement: “The vile abuse directed at Ezgjan Alioski and Nicolas Pepe on social media after yesterday’s game with Arsenal will not be tolerated by Leeds United.
“We will work closely with police and the footballing authorities to ensure those responsible are identified and punished.”
We utterly condemn the vile abuse directed at Nicolas Pepe and Ezgjan Alioski on social media following our match against Leeds. This is completely unacceptable and we will be working with the police and authorities to do everything we can to trace and prosecute the culprits. — Arsenal (@Arsenal) November 23, 2020
Former England winger Shawn Wright-Phillips shared a tweet on Sunday night which highlighted some of the vile abuse of Pepe on the social media platform.
He wrote: “And @Twitter say they are protecting people from racial abuse!! When is it enough and when will it stop?!? @Arsenal @FA”
Former Manchester United star Patrice Evra was critical of Alioski and said he ‘deserved an Oscar’ for getting Pepe sent off.
He said on Sky Sports: “You can see Pepe is not happy because when you do that it’s frustration and he’s a little bit silly.
“He should say ‘sorry’ to all of his teammates because Arsenal had a plan and everything changed after that.
Troy Deeney criticises attitude of Arsenal's Nicolas Pepe after being sent off in draw against Leeds United
“Alioski deserves an Oscar because he played [it] so well. If I was the Leeds coach I’d be so happy with Alioski. But come on, it looked like he broke his nose.
“It was really silly from Pepe. You’re not playing a lot and after [Mikel] Arteta gave him a chance, don’t come and cry when you’re not playing the next game.”
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