Idrissa Gana Gueye, a Senegalese professional footballer, who plays for the Paris Saint Germain club refused to wear a jersey with a rainbow flag in a match against Montpellier on Saturday.
The issue has been reported by French media. The footballer traveled with the PSG squad but did not play the match. Management cited personal reasons for his absence from the match. Head Coach Mauricio Roberto Pochettino Trossero said the player “had to leave the team sheet for personal reasons. But he isn’t injured”.
The media and football fans are reluctant to believe the statement released by the head coach. They believe Idrissa skipped the match because he did not want to wear the jersey with a rainbow flag- a symbol of the LGBTQ+ community.
— Hunter (@Hunter02343935) May 16, 2022
It is noted that the flag featured on the players’ shirts and captain’s armbands in recognition of the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia on May 17th. French media noted that the Idrissa had missed the games in the same time period last year on the excuse of “stomach problems”.
The team of Idrissa had denied the speculations that he had boycotted the game last season. Pressure, however, is mounting on the footballer and his representatives to release the statement and clarify his absence.
French media seems to be convinced that he has intentionally boycotted the games. RMC Sport, a French media outlet, believes Gueye had refused to wear the shirt because of the rainbow flag.
PSG had released the picture of its jersey before the match. “On World Day Against Homophobia, our jerseys will have the rainbow flag, a symbol of peace and diversity of the LGBT movement,” read a statement.
“Homophobia is not an opinion but a crime,” tweeted Rouge Direct on Sunday. “The LFP (League) and PSG must ask Gana Gueye to explain himself and very quickly. And punish him if necessary.”
The organization on Monday reaffirmed the football club to offer clarification.