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Manchester City's Bernardo Silva charged with misconduct over Benjamin Mendy tweet

The Portuguese player tweeted an image of a young Mendy alongside an image of the brand mascot of Spanish confectionery brand Conguitos

Bernardo Silva, left, played for Manchester City against Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League - the evening before the FA charge was brought against him. Getty Images
Bernardo Silva, left, played for Manchester City against Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League - the evening before the FA charge was brought against him. Getty Images

Manchester City midfielder Bernardo Silva has been charged with misconduct by the English Football Association over a social media post about teammate Benjamin Mendy.

The Portuguese player tweeted an image of a young Mendy alongside an image of the brand mascot of Spanish confectionery brand Conguitos on September 22. He deleted the post, which has now led to an FA charge.

A statement from the governing body on Wednesday morning read: "Bernardo Silva has been charged with misconduct for a breach of FA Rule E3 in relation to a social media post on September 22, 2019.

'It is alleged that the Manchester City player's activity breaches FA Rule E3(1) as it was insulting and/or improper and/or brought the game into disrepute.

"It is further alleged that the activity constitutes an 'aggravated breach', which is defined in FA Rule E3(2), as it included reference, whether expressed or implied, to race and/or colour and/or ethnic origin.

"The midfielder has until 9 October 2019 to provide a response."

FA guidelines state that a breach of rule E3 on social media would not immediately mean a six-match ban, as a proven offence on the pitch would.

Instead, a regulatory commission will decide what sanction it deems appropriate for the act committed.

Where the comments are "clearly pejorative and discriminatory", match-based sanctions can be imposed. Mandatory education courses are also to form part of any sanction for a proven offence.

On the same day as the tweet which has now resulted in an FA charge, Silva posted: "Can't even joke with a friend these days... You guys..."

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Manchester City's 2-0 Champions League win over Dinamo Zagreb in pictures

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It is understood Silva wrote to the FA to express regret over the Mendy tweet, while Mendy also wrote to the governing body to say that no personal offence had been caused.

City manager Pep Guardiola also leapt to the defence of his player.

"Bernardo is one of the most lovely people I have ever met in my life," Guardiola said last week.

"He speaks four or five languages - that is the best way to understand how open-minded he is - and one of his best friends is Mendy. He is like a brother for him. The image for the two is not about the colour of the skin.

"If something (a charge) happens it would be a mistake because Bernardo is an exceptional person."

Updated: October 2, 2019 01:59 PM

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