Paris (AFP) – A collective negligence led to racial profiling at youth-team level inside Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain, French league authorities said Tuesday when fining the club 100,000 euros ($114,000).
The affair began when French investigative website Mediapart revealed racial profiling by talent scouts since 2013 where potential youth signings were identified by their ethnicity.
The Qatari-owned club also face an upcoming hearing from the Paris prosecutors on the same matter.
The football league said the use of these forms had no part in a general racial profiling culture.
“From what we can see PSG did not use the information on ethnicity for discriminatory ends. There is no case of discrimination that can be proved,” LFP disciplinary commissioner Sebastien Deneux said at a press conference.
“It is more a case of individual clumsiness and collective negligence,” he said, explaining how the system came into being.
The youth candidates were categorised as French, North African, West Indian or African. Such profiling is illegal in France.
One of PSG’s youth team directors Bertrand Reuzeau, who was in charge from 2013-2015, was given a suspended fine of 10,000 euros for his role in the matter.
The club itself launched an internal investigation in October “to understand how such practices could exist and decide what measures to take”.
The club claimed after its own review that there had been no discrimination or measures targeting ethnic groups.
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