Pep Guardiola fined £20,000 for ribbon gesture in support of Catalan political prisoners

Friday, March 9, 2018

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has been fined £20,000 for his gesture in support of Catalan political prisoners.

Guardiola has repeatedly worn a yellow ribbon as a show of solidarity with two leading independence activists, Jordi Sanchez and Jordi Cuixart.

Sanchez and Cuixart have been held in detention without trial since being arrested in September, on the eve of Catalonia's unofficial independence referendum.

The Spanish authorities allege that the pair impeded attempts by police to crack down on those organising the illegal vote. However the case has become a cause celebre in Catalonia, with Sanchez even touted as a possible president of the region's Parliament.

The wearing of political symbols is banned by the FA, although Guardiola maintains that his decision to wear the ribbon is merely a humanitarian stand and has no bearing on Catalan independence per se.

He had ignored two previous warnings from the FA over the matter, and has refused to apologise even after being charged - although he has promised to stop wearing the ribbon if City's owners ask him to do so.

Guardiola has been accused of hypocrisy by certain sections of the media over recent days, with critics suggesting his support for the 'two Jordis' is incompatible with his willingness to work for City's owners, members of the UAE royal family whose country has a notoriously poor human rights record.