Qatar-owned Paris Saint-Germain open probe into racial profiling of young players

This week has not been a good one for PSG, as they and FIFA boss Gianni Infantino were accused of corruption in financial fair play probe. (AFP)
Updated 08 November 2018
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Qatar-owned Paris Saint-Germain open probe into racial profiling of young players

  • Between 2013 and the spring of this year, PSG’s scouting department filled in evaluation forms on young players that included stating their ethnicity.
  • Report comes days after yet more FFP allegations levelled at Qatar-owed giants.

PARIS: Paris Saint-Germain have opened a probe into claims that young players were subject to racial profiling during their recruitment process, a source close to the club has revealed.
“We have opened an internal investigation,” the source said, after the claims made by French investigative website Mediapart, who cited documents from the latest series of Football Leaks allegations.
According to Mediapart, between 2013 and the spring of this year, PSG’s scouting department filled in evaluation forms on young players that included stating their ethnicity. Their origin was to be described as French, North African, West Indian or African. Social profiling is illegal in France.
The source acknowledged the existence of these forms to AFP.
Mediapart, part of the European Investigative Collaborations consortium which has studied the Football Leaks documents, said the forms were used to evaluate potential young signings.
The controversy “blew up internally” in March 2014, said Mediapart, in relation to the case of a talented 13-year-old player called Yann Gboho, who caught the eye of scouts while he was playing for FC Rouen in the Normandy region of northern France.
A PSG scout who evaluated the teenager in November 2013 stated his origin as “West Indian.” The evaluation form has a box on ethnicity with a drop-down menu offering four choices: French, North African, West Indian and African, Mediapart said.
The investigative website quoted Serge Fournier, the PSG scout who evaluated Gboho, as saying “instead of French, it should have said white, especially as all the players we recommended were French.”
“PSG didn’t want us to recruit players born in Africa, because you are never sure of their date of birth,” he was quoted as saying.
The player in question — a French youth international who was born in the Ivory Coast — eventually signed for rival Ligue 1 club Rennes.
The allegations trigger memories of a scandal that erupted earlier this decade, after Mediapart exposed a discussion in 2010 on race quotas in France’s age-group teams.
According Mediapart, those at the top of French football believed there were “too many blacks and too many Arabs and not enough whites” in the game.


Saudi Arabia enjoy more golden success at Special Olympics

Updated 19 March 2019
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Saudi Arabia enjoy more golden success at Special Olympics

  • Kingdom's athletes claim three golds, one silver and three bronzes on day four in Abu Dhabi.
  • Saudi Arabia medal tally now up to an impressive 25.

LONDON: Saudi Arabia enjoyed another good day at the Special Olympics in Abu Dhabi winning three golds, one silver and three bronzes to take their medal tally to an impressive 25 after four days.
Abdulaziz Alharthi got the day off to a great start in the pool, the 17-year-old from Jeddah picking up gold in the men’s 25m freestyle.
That was then followed up with the second gold of the day as Mohammed Alolayan powered home in the 5,000m. It was his second medal of the Games after he took home a bronze in the triathlon.
Moayed Aldarwish completed the hat-trick of golds coming home first in the 400m.


That was not the end of the success for the Kingdom as Fares Almateq and Naif Alshammari won silver in the men’s doubles table tennis. This was Fares’ second win of the week, having impressively won gold in the men’s singles event earlier.
Heba Shawli then became another multiple-medal winner when she took home the bronze in the softball throw event — she having won gold in the 25m run event.
Faisal Algosaibi and Faris Khouj, also part of the 4x100m freestyle relay team, each won bronze in their division of the 25m freestyle swimming.


Other winners of multiple medals include Hassan Alhadhariti, who won three golds and one silver in powerlifting; Sara Felemban and Jana Albeshri, who both won silver in bocce women’s singles and women’s team events, and Shahad Sunbul, who won silver in the bocce women’s team event and bronze in the bocce women’s singles event.