The Baggies confirm that they have spoken to their forward about his controversial gesture after netting against West Ham but will continue to use him while under investigation
The French striker marked his second goal in Saturday's 3-3 Premier League draw at West Ham with a gesture that has been linked to anti-establishment and allegedly anti-semitic connotations in his homeland.
Anelka insisted that he had not set out to offend anyone of Jewish faith, stating that the action was dedicated to his comedian friend, Dieudonne M'bala M'bala, but he could face a ban of up to five games from the FA.
In a statement on its official website, West Brom declared it has accepted the forward's explanation for the celebration but has warned him not to do it again, while explaining that he will remain available for selection until the investigation is concluded.
"Nicolas was asked to explain his goal celebration by caretaker head coach Keith Downing within minutes of the game finishing at West Ham," the statement wrote. "Nicolas said that he performed the gesture to dedicate his goal to a friend and vehemently denied having any intention to cause offense. Upon reporting for training this morning, Nicolas was asked by sporting and technical director Richard Garlick to give a full explanation about his goal celebration, during which he again strongly denied intending to cause offense.
"The club fully acknowledges that Nicolas's goal celebration has caused offence in some quarters and has asked Nicolas not to perform the gesture again. Nicolas immediately agreed to adhere to this request. The club is aware that the Football Association is investigating the matter and has offered its full co-operation. The club will continue to make its own enquiries - a process which will remain confidential between the club and Nicolas.
"Nicolas is eligible for matches whilst the FA carries out its investigation. Therefore, Nicolas will remain under consideration for first-team selection whilst the FA and club continue their enquiries."