QPR boss Harry Redknapp says Benoit Assou-Ekotto should not be banned after being charged with improper conduct for social media comments relating to the ‘quenelle’ gesture.
The left-back, on loan at Rangers from Tottenham, has until 8 April to respond to the Football Association charge.
Redknapp said: “There are four or five other players as well and they’ve not been banned, so I don’t see why Benoit should be banned really.”
The quenelle sign is described as an inverted Nazi salute and Nicolas Anelka was banned for five matches and fined £80,000 for using it after scoring against West Ham in December, and was later sacked by West Brom.
Anelka denied his use of the sign was intended to be anti-Semitic, and an FA commission reported it did not find he was “an anti-Semite”.
The striker claimed he made the gesture in support of his friend Dieudonne M’bala M’bala, a French comedian who has been convicted seven times of anti-Semitic crimes.
Redknapp added: “I’ll be honest, I’d be lying if I said I knew exactly what it was all about. Obviously there was a gesture Anelka made.
“There’s been several players that have come out and commented on it and he [Assou-Ekotto] is just one of them.
“The others have all been fined or whatever but not been banned, so I don’t see why he should be the one that gets banned when the others haven’t.
“I don’t know exactly what he said. I don’t follow Twitter. I wouldn’t have a clue exactly what he said – I’ll have to look at it before he gets a hearing or whatever.”