Manchester United star Paul Pogba has dismissed reports that he has quit playing for the French international team following the latest Islamophobic statements made by President Emmanuel Macron on Friday that Islam was the source of international terrorism.
According to the Arabic sports website 195sports, Pogba resigned yesterday in response to the French government’s move granting the recently slain teacher – who had shown caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to his class – the country’s highest honour, the Legion d’honneur. Pogba allegedly considered the decision an insult to him and to French Muslims, especially since Islam is the second largest religion in France after Christianity.
However, the 27-year-old footballer today branded the reports as “unacceptable” and “fake news” according to his Instagram page. “I am taking legal action against the publishers and spreaders of these 100% Fake News,” he added.
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So The Sun did again… absolutely 100% unfounded news about me are going around, stating things I have never said or thought. I am appalled, angry, shocked and frustrated some “media” sources use me to make total fake headlines in the sensible subject of French current events and adding my religion and the French National Team to the pot. I am against any and all forms of terror and violence. My religion is one of peace and love and must be respected. Unfortunately, some press people don’t act responsibly when writing the news, abusing their press freedom, not verifying if what they write/reproduce is true, creating a gossip chain without caring it affects people’s lives and my life. I am taking legal action against the publishers and spreaders of these 100% Fake News. In a quick shout out to The Sun, who normally could not care less: some of you guys probably went to school and will remember how your teacher said to always check your sources, don’t write without making sure. But hey, seems you did it again and on a very serious topic this time, shame on you! #fakenews #AllezLesBleus @equipedefrance
Pogba who has previously shared pictures on social media of his Umrah pilgrimage to the holy city of Makkah last year opened up about his Muslim faith, saying it makes him a “better person”.
“Islam is not the image that everyone sees, terrorism,” he told The Times’ Life Times podcast, “What we hear in the media is really something else. It’s something beautiful.”