Pep Guardiola: Manchester City manager accepts charge for wearing yellow ribbon

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Guardiola explains why he wears a yellow ribbon

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has accepted a Football Association charge over "wearing a political message, specifically a yellow ribbon".

Guardiola had until 18:00 GMT today to respond to a charge of breaching the FA's kit and advertising regulations.

In November, Guardiola said he wore the ribbon to support imprisoned politicians in his native Catalonia.

Following his admission of the charge, a hearing has been requested, with a date still to be set.

The FA spoke to the City boss about the situation in December and had previously issued two formal warnings.

Action was taken though when he wore it pitchside - he is free to wear it elsewhere - during City's FA Cup fifth-round defeat at Wigan on 19 February.

Two key members of the Catalan independence movement, Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sanchez, were held without bail after an independence vote in October, which the Spanish government deemed illegal.

Guardiola said in November: "If one day in prison was already too much, look how many days they've been there now.

"Like everybody knows, hopefully sooner or later I can stop wearing it.

"All the politicians that are in prison, I hope they can leave and go back home soon with their families and continue living the lives they deserve."

Pep Guardiola
The FA spoke to Pep Guardiola twice before charging him after Man City's FA Cup defeat at Wigan

Analysis

BBC Radio 5 live sports news correspondent Richard Conway

It is understood that the Manchester City manager does not see this as an apology - but that he will observe the rules of the country where he is working.

Guardiola actively attempted to cover up the ribbon during City's past two games against Arsenal and Chelsea. During the FA Cup defeat at Wigan before that, it is thought that he unintentionally displayed the ribbon after unzipping his jacket.

He will continue to wear the yellow ribbon when he can - so pre and post-match. It's only pitchside, during the 90 minutes of the game, where the Football Association's regulation applies.

Guardiola accepted the charge on Saturday, but it is believed that he and Manchester City pointed out what they perceive to be a number of inconsistencies in the FA's regulations - such as the fact they appear to jar with Uefa's policy of allowing political symbols so long as they are deemed inoffensive.

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