Papy Djilobodji who is on loan to Werder Bremen is an emotional player, who gives his all on the pitch. Unfortunately, he seem to have lost control of his emotions last Saturday in the Bundesliga match between Werder and Mainz. The scene in question, was his clash on the field with Pablo De Blasis, in a duell.Afterwards, he ran a finger through his throat to indicate a slit-throat gesture. All captured by the cameras on the pitch. The referee did not see it.
Initially, the DFB panel investigated the case and gave Djilobodji a three match ban. However Werder Bremen appealed and a solitary DFB judge reduced the punishment to two games ban and a fine of €15.000.
I followed the comments of Werder Bremen’s coach,Viktor Skripnik, who said that Africans are emotional people with temperament in his bid to defend Djilobodji.Equally strange was the statement by Bremen’s executive director,Thomas Eichin, who said,it is a custom in Africa. I believe, it has nothing to do with Africa. It is just a lame excuse to defend the indefensible. Cultural relativism does not apply here.
Incidentally, Djilobodji, is not the first person to do the slit throat gesture.Deniz Naki, a German, who was playing for St.Pauli in 2009 did something similar. Naki, did the slit throat gesture against Hansa Rostock fans and he was sentenced to three match ban by the DFB panel for unsportsmanlike conduct.
The punishment of the Senegalese player comes at an important time that Werder is fighting against relegation. Djilobodji will miss three games.Because he has already accumulated 5 yellow cards in previous matches, which leads to a ban.