American Soccer Team Cuts Player Over Wife’s Social Media Posts

June 10, 2020 Updated: June 10, 2020

A Major League Soccer team released a player over social media posts his wife shared.

Aleksandar Katai, a Serbian player, was informed by LA Galaxy officials late last week of his firing, the team said.

The club said in a one-sentence statement that it “mutually agreed to part ways” with Katai.

The move stemmed from social media posts Katai’s wife, Tea Katai, shared and commented on.

In an earlier statement, the LA Galaxy described the posts as “racist and violent,” saying the team strongly condemned them and “requested their immediate removal.”

“The LA Galaxy stands firmly against racism of any kind, including that which suggests violence or seeks to demean the efforts of those in pursuit of of racial equality,” it continued, adding that team officials “stand with communities of color, and especially the black community, in the protests and fight against systemic racism, social inequality, bigotry, and violence.”

Aleksandar Katai said in a statement before he was released that his wife’s “views are not ones that I share and are not tolerated in my family.”

Epoch Times Photo
Los Angeles Galaxy president Chris Klein speaks at the unveiling of the David Beckham statue at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, Calif., on March 2, 2019. (Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

He called her posts “unacceptable,” adding, “I will ensure that my family and I take the necessary actions to learn, understand, listen, and support the black community.”

One of the posts Tea Katai shared on her Instagram story featured a photograph of a New York City Police Department vehicle driving into a crowd of protesters with a caption written in Serbian urging police to “kill” them. Another referred to people at the events as “disgusting cattle,” according to The Associated Press.

Another showed a screenshot of a video showing the looting of a store. A looter holds a box of Nike shoes; the photograph was shared by Katai with the caption “Black Nikes Matter.”

The posts were later deleted.

Aleksandar Katai, 29, was “very understanding through this process,” LA Galaxy President Chris Klein said in a statement.

“We believe strongly that we’re a club that represents our staff, represents our players, represents our fans and our community,” Klein said. “The decision, in that respect, was not a difficult one. We have to hold to those values. This is not a soccer decision.”

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