Liverpool’s Response to Suarez Situation May Have Tainted their Brand Says Anti-Racism Chief
January 6, 2012
Piara Powar, executive director of European football’s anti-discrimination body FARE has called for the Football Association (FA) to charge Liverpool with bringing the game into disrepute over their response to Luis Suarez’s eight-match ban.
Powar believes Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish’s comments had been ”undignified” and that their reaction had damaged the club’s brand across the world.
He said: ”This is a lack of respect for the governing body by Liverpool and the FA should charge Liverpool FC and Kenny Dalglish.
”I think the FA should come back now and be very clear that Liverpool could be construed to have brought the game into disrepute by the way in which they have consistently undermined the judgment and by Kenny Dalglish’s comments.
”Liverpool have been too keen to support their man and in doing so have whipped up a sense of paranoia amongst their fans. This is not the Liverpool FC that we have applauded in the past for their support for a whole range of issues.
”The responses from Kenny Dalglish have been undignified; the way in which they have dealt with the whole matter has been unprofessional. For the club to so aggressively militate against what looks to most people a considered judgment from the FA leads to a potential for anarchy.”
Powar said reaction from his colleagues in other parts of the world made him believe the affair was damaging Liverpool.
He added: ”They have damaged their brand, no question. There is no question that Liverpool do have a global appeal, but I have emails from colleagues in Africa asking me what the hell is going on.
”I think people will be watching this and I believe there is no question that their plans for global expansion will have been damaged by this. That’s not to say they cannot come back from this but it has done them a lot of damage and they have not conducted themselves in a very palatable way.”
Powar’s call comes after Lord Ouseley, the chairman on British football’s anti-racism group Kick It Out, called Liverpool ”hypocritical” and Suarez’s apology ”lamentable”.
Ouseley also described Liverpool players wearing T-shirts in support of Suarez as ”dreadful”.