You remember our run in with Sachin Nakrani a few months ago. He posted that well known picture from years ago of a Chelsea fan doing the Nazi salute with his daughter in his arms and claimed that it was from Chelsea’s FA Cup semi-final game against Spurs that day. Nakrani is a Liverpool fan and obviously had taken offence to Chelsea fans singing “murderers” during the minute’s silence for Hillsborough, and fair enough. Several people told him the picture was from years ago so he conceded he got it wrong.
After being so indignant about this racist Chelsea supporter, you would think that his opinions on racism would be consistent. However, Nakrani is a Liverpool supporter, so this obviously isn’t the case.
When reporting on the FA’s report of Suarez’s racial abuse of Patrice Evra, Nakrani wrote: What the report shows is that in deciding to ban Suárez for eight matches and fine the player £40,000 for racially abusing Evra, the panel judged that in a row which that boiled down to one man’s word against another, it was Evra who was telling the truth.
This article was published several hours after the FA published their report but directly contradicted what was actually written in the report. Luis Suarez’s chosen representative, Peter McCormick OBE, acknowledged that this case wasn’t “one man’s word against another”, as Nakrani claimed.
“215. It was accepted by both Mr Greaney and Mr McCormick in closing submissions that this is not simply a case of one person’s word against another.”
Nakrani clearly hadn’t read the FA report before writing his article in response to it. Shoddy journalism. Nakrani claimed that he had read the report though, so you would have to assume that he purposefully ignored the judgement that was given in the report, and came to his own conclusion, despite it totally contradicting what the FA found.
When United fans brought this to him, he decided to Tweet that United fans were giving him abuse because he had criticised Chelsea fans for disrespecting the minute’s silence.
However, when looking at his mentions, there was no abuse from United fans about the silence. When asked to produce a link or quote any of the abuse he had received from United fans, he refused. Several people have repeatedly asked him why he lied but Nakrani’s response is always the same. He will explain why he lied face to face, but won’t reveal why on Twitter.
Sid Lowe, who is a well-respected journalist at The Guardian, has written an embarrassingly sycophantic article about Luis Suarez, and even goes as far to suggest that Suarez didn’t even call Evra a negro. He was flown in to Liverpool especially to conduct the interview as he is based in Spain.
“After three days of video evidence at a three-man Independent Regulatory Commission, lip readers produced no hard evidence that he said what he was accused of saying.”
On Twitter, Lowe admitted that Suarez told him that he didn’t call Evra “negro” but he didn’t know whether this was true or not. The fact that Lowe has referred to the fact that lip readers didn’t produce hard evidence over what Suarez said suggests that he believes him.
However, anyone who had read the FA report on the Suarez case knows for certain that Suarez called Evra a “negro”. How? Because Suarez himself admitted that is what he said. Whilst Evra and Suarez’s evidence differs on how many times the word “negro” was used and where abouts on the pitch it occurred, it is not up for debate that Suarez used the word. In his defence, Suarez admitted to saying “Por que, negro?”
So why would Lowe refer to lip readers? Why would they need lip readers to prove Suarez called Evra a “negro” when he admitted that he said it in his own evidence.
There are two conclusions. Either Lowe hasn’t read the FA report and didn’t know that Suarez admitted to using the word, then believed Suarez’s most recent version of events when he told Lowe he didn’t use it. It’s a concern that a journalist writing for (one of) the best newspapers in the country could approach such an interview without having done the most basic of research though. Or, even worse, Lowe has read the FA’s report but ignored the evidence given by Suarez and purposefully suggested that Suarez didn’t use the word, despite knowing that he did.
If Lowe has read the report, which he claims he has, why didn’t he pull Suarez up on the lie he told him? Lowe should know that Suarez called Evra a “negro”, so why not question him on how his story had changed? Lowe is adamant that his piece isn’t sycophantic, that he is attempting to be balanced, but how can anyone believe this to be the case when he let’s such a blatant lie pass him by without question? Lowe has since said on Twitter that “perhaps” he should have made more of the fact Suarez lied to him in his interview. Perhaps? How can someone claim to be writing a balanced piece when ignoring the negatives (the fact he called Evra “negro” and the fact he just lied to Lowe’s face) and instead painting him as a poor little warrior, who has overcome so many battles to be playing in the Premier League (and racially abusing his opponents) today.
One last thing… didn’t Jen Chang, the Director of Communications at Liverpool Football Club, used to be Lowe’s boss at Sports Illustrated? I’m sure that has nothing to do with Lowe’s decision to write such a one sided response to Suarez being found guilty of racially abusing Evra…
It’s another fairly embarrassing incident for The Guardian.
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