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Crystal Palace

Palace keeper Hennessey charged over alleged Nazi salute

00:28 GMT 24/01/2019
Wayne Hennessey
The 32-year-old was seen holding one hand in the air and the other above his mouth on Instagram, although he denied making a racist gesture

Crystal Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey has been charged by the Football Association (FA) over a social media post in which he made an alleged Nazi salute.

Wales international Hennessey denied deliberately making the gesture in a photograph on Instagram posted by his Palace team-mate Max Meyer.

But the FA confirmed on Wednesday that Hennessey has been charged with bringing the game into disrepute.

"Crystal Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey has been charged with a breach of FA Rule E3," an FA statement said.

"It is alleged that a gesture he made, which was captured by a photograph and posted on social media, breached Rule E3[1] as it was abusive and/or insulting and/or improper and/or brought the game into disrepute.

"It is further alleged that this constitutes an 'Aggravated Breach', which is defined in Rule E3[2], as it included reference to ethnic origin and/or race and/or religion and/or belief."

Hennessey, who has made 17 Premier League appearances for Palace this season, has been given until January 31 to respond to the FA charge.

The goalkeeper missed Palace's 4-3 defeat to Liverpool last weekend after sustaining a thigh injury, and 39-year-old Julian Speroni was forced to start that game with Vincente Guaita also ruled out. 

Speroni made a significant error to help Liverpool take a 3-2 lead after James Tomkins had drawn the visitors level at 2-2. 

Palace are currently three points above the drop zone, and have crucial clashes with Southampton and Fulham in their next two league games. 

But before the trip to St Mary's, the Croydon-based club will face Tottenham in the FA Cup fourth round on Sunday, just three days after Spurs take on Chelsea in the second leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final.