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Chelsea apologizes for winger’s Instagram post that some felt insulted China

By Jiang Jie (People's Daily Online)    15:08, July 24, 2017

Though winning a 3-0 victory at a preseason match against Arsenal in Beijing, Chelsea did not leave China in a cheerful mood after having to apologize to the Chinese people for a winger who was suspected of insulting the host country of their winning match.

One day before the match at the National Stadium in Beijing where a sea of blue cheered, one of its wingers, Robert Kenedy Nunes Nascimento, more widely known as Kenedy, posted a video on his Instagram with the caption “porra China.”

The video immediately triggered criticism from Chinese netizens after “porra” was translated online as offensive slur. While the 21-year-old Brazilian soccer player later deleted the video and explained that he meant nothing racist and was “sorry if someone was sad,” many insisted that the “apology” was insincere and demanded a formal apology from Chelsea.

“We offer this apology with utmost sincerity. We have listened carefully to the criticism and will use the lessons learnt over the last two days to improve our processes in future …Kenedy’s actions were a mistake that he will learn greatly from. His behaviour does not represent the entire team and does not align with the club’s high expectations and strict requirements of its young players. He has been strongly reprimanded and disciplined,” the British soccer club said in a public apology on July 23.

Meanwhile, some Brazilian fans on Twitter argued that Kenedy’s expression had nothing to do with racism, as the term “porra” is also used among some local youth when trying to act “cool.”

“In this case he’s trying to be a little funny. In this case the whole phrase means ‘what the hell China?’ Something Chinese did, something out of common or funny,” said a Brazilian fan that only identified himself as E.

“I avoid using it though. It can have a lot of [meaning] but normally people just think about [the] bad meaning. And [if] someone [tries] to translate it, it will [have] a bad meaning,” E told People’s Daily Online.

Everyone at Chelsea Football Club has the utmost respect and admiration for China and loves Chinese fans, said the club’s apology statement, adding that Chelsea hopes to build on the strong relationship and firmly join hands with China on future cooperation.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Jiang Jie, Bianji)

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