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Mali's Mohamed Camara suspended 4 matches after hiding anti-homophobia badge

Mali's Mohamed Camara suspended 4 matches after hiding anti-homophobia badge
Monaco's Mohamed Camara, right, during the French League One soccer match between Monaco and Marseille at the Stade Louis II in Monaco, on Nov. 13, 2022.   -  
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Daniel Cole/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved


Monaco midfielder Mohamed Camara was given a four-game suspension by the French league after covering up an anti-homophobia message on the team’s shirt during the club's final league game of the season.

The French league's disciplinary committee said in a statement late Thursday (May 30) that it sanctioned the Mali international for his refusal to “carry out one or more actions to raise awareness of the fight against homophobia.”

The French league staged its annual campaign against discrimination during the weekend’s final round with each team wearing a badge featuring the word “homophobia” crossed out. Camara taped over the badge during his team’s 4-0 win over Nantes, and also skipped the pre-match group photo where all players stood before a banner with the same message.

French Sports Minister Amélie Oudéa-Castéra called Camara’s actions “unacceptable” and called for “firm sanctions” against both the player and the club.

Monaco coach Adi Hütter said after the game that the club supports the league’s initiative and that Camara’s actions were “a personal choice.”

This was the fourth consecutive season that professional clubs in France had been invited to use rainbow-colored numbers, armbands or patches on their shirts to support the LGBTQ movement. Each year, similar controversies arise.

In 2022, Senegalese-born Everton midfielder Idrissa Gueye, then playing for PSG, refused to participate in a game requiring players to wear shirts with rainbow-colored numbers. Senegal’s President Macky Sall publicly supported Gueye, stating “his religious convictions must be respected.”

Last year, Nantes fined Egyptian striker Mostafa Mohamed for similar reasons. Mohamed again did not play in Sunday’s game. Camara also did not play in the equivalent game last season.

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