US soccer team LA Galaxy has parted company with Serbian midfielder Aleksandar Katai after his wife published “a series of racist and violent social media posts,” the Major League Soccer (MLS) team said on Friday.
In Instagram posts that have since been deleted, Tea Katai referred to Black Lives Matter protesters as “disgusting cattle” and urged violence against them according to media reports.
Black Lives Matter supporters have protested in cities across the US since the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man killed in police custody late last month, calling for police reform and racial justice.
The LA Galaxy released a brief statement on Friday announcing that midfielder Katai and the team had “mutually agreed to part ways,” after “strongly condemning” Tea Katai’s posts when they became aware of them on Wednesday.
The LA Galaxy have parted ways with Aleksandar Katai. pic.twitter.com/mcu0fTreC8
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) June 5, 2020
“The LA Galaxy stand with communities of color, and especially the Black community, in the protests and fight against systemic racism, social inequality, bigotry and violence,” the club said.
The 29-year-old Katai, who previously played for the Chicago Fire and signed with LA Galaxy in December, has apologised for his wife’s social media postings.
The MLS season has been on hold since March when the novel coronavirus outbreak froze much of the professional sports calendar, and earlier this week ratified a labour deal allowing play to resume in 2020.
Democratic US politicians urge police reform as protesters march for 11th day
Prominent Democratic politicians on Friday embraced the cause of US protesters angered by the death of a black man in Minneapolis police custody, adopting their slogans and announcing reforms as tensions remained high in major cities.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser, who has sparred with US President Donald Trump over his sometimes heavy-handed response to the rallies and marches in the nation’s capital, had the slogan “Black Lives Matter” painted in massive yellow letters on a street leading to the White House.
In Minneapolis, Democratic city leaders voted to end the use of knee restraints and chokeholds, although the ordinance must be approved by a judge.
Separate autopsies conducted by the Hennepin County Medical examiner and a team hired by Floyd’s family each found that he died from asphyxiation.
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