Leeds defender charged with using racist language towards Norwich City striker Cameron Jerome
Leeds United defender Giuseppe Bellusci has been charged with misconduct for allegedly using racist language towards Norwich City striker Cameron Jerome, the Football Association has announced.
The incident unfolded at Carrow Road during City’s 1-1 draw with Leeds on Tuesday, October 21. Bellusci has until Friday, January 2 to respond to the charge.
The FA has released a statement which reads: “Leeds United player Giuseppe Bellusci has been charged with misconduct for a breach of FA Rule E3 which is alleged to have occurred during the fixture between Norwich City and Leeds United on October 21 2014.
“It is alleged Bellusci used abusive and/or insulting words towards Cameron Jerome, of Norwich City FC, contrary to Rule E3(1).
“It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3(1) is an “aggravated breach” as defined in Rule E3(2), as it included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race. Bellusci has until 2 January 2014 to respond.”
Leeds have released a statement in defence of the Italian defender in response to the charge, stating on their official website: “The player has consistently made it clear to the club that he did not use racist language.
“The club understands that there is no third party evidence supporting Mr Jerome’s allegation. Accordingly, the player will be contesting the charge.”
Bellusci and Jerome clashed during the first half of the Championship match, leading to referee Mark Clattenburg stopping the game temporarily so that he could speak with City manager Neil Adams and Leeds boss Darko Milanic, who has since been sacked by the Yorkshire club because of poor performance on the pitch.
Clattenburg then included his version of events in a report of the game and the FA announced it would investigate the allegation from Jerome.
Leeds’ Italian owner Massimo Cellino came to the defence of Bellusci after the game, saying “Bellusci is no racist”, and Canaries chief Adams said “we back our player” after the game.
Adams also praised the manner in which referee Clattenburg dealt with the situation at the time, speaking to both players and a representative of each club to take statements during the half-time break.