Premier League footballer Andre Gray has been banned for four games by the FA over tweets suggesting that gays should be “burned”.
Andre Gray, a striker for Burnley, had faced criticism after shocking homophobic tweets from 2012 resurfaced online.
He wrote: “Is it me or are there gays everywhere? #Burn #Die #MakesMeSick”
Now the FA has moved to ban Gray for four matches, despite him asking “for forgiveness” for the tweets from 2012.
On the official Burnley website, the club said: “Gray was found guilty of six aggravated breaches of FA Rule E3(1) regarding comments deemed to be ‘abusive and/or insulting and/or improper and/or bringing the game into disrepute’.
“The breaches also included reference to an “aggravating factor”, namely, sexual orientation and/or gender and/or colour and/or race contrary to FA Rule E3(2).
“Gray admitted three of the breaches, but denied a further three. However, following the Independent Regulatory Commission hearing, on Thursday, September 22, these three were found proven.”
Gray will also not appeal, will “attend a one-to-one FA education course”, and has agreed to pay a £25,000 fine.
Gray said previously: “I would like to respond to media reports with regards to previous tweets posted from my Twitter account.
“Firstly, I want to offer a sincere and unreserved apology to anybody I may have offended in relation to these tweets. The tweets were posted four years ago when I was a completely different person to the man I am now. I was at a very different point in my life back then – one that I’ve worked hard to move on from.
“Thankfully a lot has changed in my life since then. I have experienced a lot over the past four years and have had to take responsibility for a number of things in my life which has enabled me to mature and grow as a person since that time.
“I have a lot of regrets regarding a number of things I’ve done in the past and realise I have made some big mistakes, none more so than these tweets, but I would like to stress that I’ve worked incredibly hard to completely transform my life since that time.”
“To clarify, I do not hold the beliefs written in those tweets whatsoever. I can assure everybody that I am absolutely not homophobic and as said previously I can only apologise and ask for forgiveness to anyone I offended.
“Thankfully I am not the guy I was back then and will continue to work hard both on and off the pitch to become a better person.”.