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French Minister for Sport condemns Anelka gesture

France's Minister for Sport Valerie Fourneyron hit out at West Bromwich player Nicolas Anelka for making a gesture that has associations with anti-semitism in France. Writing on Twitter, she said:

"Anelka's gesture is a shocking and disgusting provocation. Anti-semitism or incitement to hatred has no place on the football field."

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Le geste d'Anelka est une provocation choquante, écoeurante. Pas de place pour antisémitisme et incitation à la haine sur terrain de foot

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West Brom player 'surprised' at anti-semitic claims

West Bromwich Albion's Nicolas Anelka Credit: Stephen Pond/PA Wir

West Brom head coach Keith Downing has said forward Nicolas Anelka is surprised by claims his goal celebration during the Baggies' 3-3 draw at West Ham was an anti-Semitic gesture.

The 34-year-old returned to the West Brom side for the first time in over two months and scored a brace in an entertaining Barclays Premier League game in which both sides came from behind.

Anelka seemingly performed the 'quenelle' salute, made famous by French comedian Dieudonne and linked to anti-Semitism in his homeland, but Downing said the striker was merely paying homage to his friend.

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West Bromwich defender apologises over embarrassing picture

Liam Ridgewell
Liam Ridgewell Credit: PA Pictures

The West Bromwich defender, Liam Ridgewell has apologised after an embarrassing picture of him in the toilet, using £20 notes instead of toilet roll, appeared on the internet.

Ridgewell, who has played for Aston Villa and Birmingham, reportedly claims the picture was taken to wind up a friend after he won a bet.

He says he never intended it to become public and understands how it could upset people. He has apologised for any offence it has caused.

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