Benfica defend Bernardo Silva over Benjamin Mendy tweet
Last Updated: 04/10/19 5:17pm
Benfica have defended their former player Bernardo Silva over his tweet likening a picture of a young Benjamin Mendy to a cartoon used historically by Spanish confectionery company Conguitos.
Silva has been charged with misconduct by the FA over the tweet, to which he has until October 9 to respond.
In their statement, Benfica said: "Bernardo Silva is a young man who always been distinguished for his simplicity, his character and his good upbringing.
"Wherever he goes, he is always missed and always ensures that the managers and team-mates who deal with him are unanimous in complimenting his happy and spontaneous nature. In Benfica, we are enormously proud of you, Bernardo!
"Turning a simple joke between two team-mates and friends into a tweet with racist intent and opening a misconduct charge demonstrates and signals a disease of our times."
City boss Pep Guardiola twice defended Silva over the incident, calling him an "exceptional person". However, at Friday's news conference when the issue was raised, Guardiola issued a brief "no comment anymore".
It is believed Silva will request a personal hearing with the FA to echo the content of a letter he has already written to them. In that letter, Sky Sports News understands, he expressed his regret at causing any unintentional offence.