Liverpool midfielder Roberto Firmino and Everton defender Mason Holgate are set to hold discussions with the Football Association this week surrounding an alleged racist probe following their clash in the FA Cup on Friday evening.
The incident took place during the Reds' 2-1 win over their city rivals, which secured Jurgen Klopp's side passage into the fourth round of the competition, as the Blues centre-back shoved the Brazilian over the advertising hoardings and into the Anfield crowd.
Following the clash, the Brazilian leapt back to his feet before sprinting after his opposite number to exchange angry words, the time in which the reported racially-charged incident took place.
- Coutinho sold.— Hesham Bilal-Hafiz (@hesham786) January 7, 2018
- Flanagan in court for assault
- Firmino facing racism investigation.
- Clyne facing drug related sanctions.
2018 going well for Liverpool so far then.
According to the Daily Mail, Holgate claimed to referee Bobby Madley instantaneously that despite Firmino's verbal barrage being in Portuguese, the Liverpool star branded him a 'negro'.
The report claims that the official was made aware of the allegations during the match and included it in his match report, however, as declared by the Sunday Mirror, via the Express, the 32-year-old stated that no racial slur had been used by the Reds playmaker.
Due to the severity of the allegation, the FA will make contact with both players in the coming week, as well as review the available footage, in the hope of establishing exactly what was said during the heated exchange.
According to lip-reading experts, using the TV images, the Brazil international is believed to have said: ‘Es maluco, filho da puta?’, which translated means: ‘Are you crazy, you son of a b***h?’
This is not the first time in recent memory an Anfield star has been accused of racial remarks, as back in 2011 Luis Suarez was banned for eight games and fined £40k after the FA commission concluded that the striker used ‘insulting words with a reference to Patrice Evra’s colour’ while the Frenchman was playing for Manchester United.