SEOUL: The Korea Football Association has asked Colombia's football association to take disciplinary action against one of its national team members for making a racist gesture at his South Korean opponents during a friendly match, officials said Saturday.
Edwin Cardona made the mocking gesture toward South Korean captain Ki Sung-yueng during Friday's testy match at Suwon World Cup Stadium in Suwon, south of Seoul. It came after the end of some pushing and shoving that ensued following James Rodriguez's foul on Kim Jin-su around the 63rd minute mark.
The gesture was caught on South Korean television, and Ki said it was "absolutely unacceptable."
"We're taking the necessary procedures with regard to the ungentlemanly gesture of the Colombian player," a KFA official told Yonhap News Agency. "The usual practice is to file a complaint with the relevant football association and request a disciplinary measure."
The KFA said Colombia Football Federation Presdident Ramon Jesurun Franco sent a letter to the KFA to apologize for Cardona's action and promised that such an incident will not happen again. In a response letter, the KFA said it was a shame to see such an incident happen during the friendly match, and it wants the federation to take a "relevant measure" against Cardona since FIFA takes racist actions seriously.
After his behaviour caused outrage from fans around the world, Cardona offered an apology for his action, saying in a video posted at the Colombian Football Federation's twitter page that he didn't mean to despise anybody, but he is sorry if his action offended anyone or caused a misunderstanding.
Officials said the football's world governing body FIFA is expected to take action.
"If our association's complaint is made known, FIFA will become aware of it, and then FIFA and the relevant continental football association will review the case and take separate disciplinary action," a KFA official said.
The official said the association will first wait and see what action the Colombian Football Federation will take before considering filing an official complaint with FIFA.
"If we consider it necessary to file a complaint with FIFA, we can do it later as we have to take the relations between the football associations of the two countries into consideration," the official said. - The Korea herald/Asia News Network