UK & World News

  • 21 January 2014, 7:34

Nicolas Anelka To Learn Fate Over 'Quenelle'

Nicolas Anelka is expected to find out later whether the FA will charge him for making a gesture widely considered to be anti-Semitic.

The striker performed the controversial gesture during a goal celebration in West Bromwich Albion's match against West Ham United on December 28.

Anelka said the gesture had been made in support of the French comedian who invented it, Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala, who called it the quenelle.

The FA is expected to publicise its decision on whether to ban Anelka later today.

Under new rules introduced last May, Anelka will face a minimum five-match ban if the FA decides he is guilty of discrimination.

Dieudonne is a controversial figure in France. He has been banned from performing in the country because his act is considered to be anti-Semitic.

He claims the quenelle is an anti-establishment gesture, but it has been widely interpreted to be a disguised Nazi salute.

Fans have photographed themselves performing the quenelle outside the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and at Holocaust memorials around the world.

On Monday, Zoopla announced its decision to end a lucrative shirt deal with West Bromfollowing the controversy over Anelka's gesture.

A statement from the company said the deal would not be renewed when it finishes at the end of this season.

The sponsorship, which began in 2012, was worth 3m. Zoopla was co-founded by American Jewish businessman Alex Chesterman.

The football club said in a statement: "West Bromwich Albion has been fully aware since the sponsorship agreement came into force in June 2012 that its partnership with Zoopla could expire this summer and therefore has been planning accordingly.

"Zoopla has today informed the club in writing that it does not wish to extend its sponsorship deal.

"The club will now actively seek a new official sponsor for next season."

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