Aston Villa’s Jores Okore has thanked Denmark supporters after the defender was told by a politician that he should not play for the national team because of his colour.
The 23-year-old, who was born in Ivory Coast but moved to Denmark at the age of three, was pictured modelling the country’s new shirts. Daniel Carlsen, leader of far-right The Danish Party tweeted: “It is unfortunately not just the national team’s shorts which has a new colour.”
Asked to explain his comment, Carlsen added: “I do not believe that Africans should represent Denmark’s national team”.
The Danish FA replied by tweeting a picture of winger Yussuf Poulsen and midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, both of whom have mixed heritage. “It’s the talent that counts,” read the message.
Okore also responded on Twitter with the message: “Thanks for all the love and support.. Stuff like that shouldn’t be a topic anymore specially in 2015,” a sentiment that was repeated by his agent Nikola Juric.
“I am disgusted by Carlsen’s sick comments. We live in the 21st century and yet I am still able to read views like that,” he told The Sun.
“I’m astonished people still think in this way in a modern society. I was disgusted just seeing the words — I wasn’t sure I could believe my own eyes. When you consider what happened in France on Friday night, it seems even more appalling.
“It appears to me to be the views of an uneducated young man who has no knowledge of the real world. Jores has always been so proud to represent Denmark, it makes me outraged that someone could hold those despicable views.”