Pepe Reina in racism storm
A Spanish TV Commercial featuring Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina has been banned following complaints of racism and homophobia.
Reina, whose surname means ‘queen’ in Spanish, was shown in the advertisement being introduced to an African tribal chief, but British campaign group ‘Operation Black Vote’ have complained that the advert depicts black people in a jungle scenario as “stupid, dumb animalistic homosexuals.”
Insurance firm Groupama, who have made the advert, have stated they do not believe it “contains either offensive nor discriminatory content.”
“I’m shocked on so many levels,” OBV director Simon Woolley said. “Firstly, how would the Spanish feel if the English stereotyped Spanish people as backward, stupid, and animalistic homosexuals?
“Secondly, what does this say about Pepe Reina? The Liverpool goalkeeper has lived and worked in the UK for nearly a decade, does he think it’s okay characterise black people this way? Does he think his black team-mates will laugh at his joke?”
Another Liverpool player, Luis Suarez, was banned earlier this season for abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra.