Controversial former soccer expert Matt Le Tissier has sparked renewed outrage on social media after sharing a picture that appears to compare the plight of the Holocaust to today's situation of wearing masks during the coronavirus pandemic.
Le Tissier, recently fired from his position with Sky Sports as a longtime television expert on the popular soccer show Soccer Saturday, has spoken out on several contentious issues throughout the year.
Le Tissier went on Twitter on Friday, re-sharing a picture posted by a user in response to a video in which a police officer challenged a member of the public on a train for the lack of a protective mask.
The outspoken Matt Le Tissier has once again caused a major storm online based on his views
The post featured a picture of Anne Frank and a caption about her treatment
Le Tissier was also controversial because of the Black Lives Matter pin
The pundit was also criticized earlier this year for his stance on Black Lives Matter after alleging TV bosses asked him to wear a badge on Saturday football.
In an interview with MailOnline on June 30th, Le Tissier said he was totally against racism but disagreed with some of the protest groups' goals.
Matt Le Tissier said he would put a Black Lives Matter badge (circled) on Sky Sports but didn't endorse their anti-capitalist goals
He said the heads of Sky had asked him and other experts to wear the logo for their appearances, and he agreed, but pointed out that he supported "the cause, not the organization."
Outside his home near Southampton, he said: “I just disagree with some points about this movement – particularly the defunding of the police and the anti-capitalist points.
'They are the two main points for me. I'm pretty glad they're taking their point, but that's mine and that's where I sit. I think a lot of people in the country would agree with me.
“I will still wear the badge because of course I believe black lives are important. It's a simple thing, I agree, but there are parts of the organization that I just can't support. & # 39;
When asked if Sky Sports experts had been asked to wear the badge, Le Tissier laughed and said, "We were asked to wear it."
Sky Sports said none of the presenters were required to wear the badge.
The picture used showed the Holocaust victim Anne Frank with the words above: “The people who hid Anne Frank broke the law. The people who killed her followed him. & # 39;
Le Tissier re-shared the picture on his personal Twitter account, adding, "Remember."
A major backlash immediately followed, with Twitter user Le Tissier giving some of their thoughts and sharply condemning his actions.
TV judge Robert Rinder was one of those who beat up the Southampton FC ambassador and branded the tweet as "stupid, stupid, stupid".
Robert, aka Judge Rinder, lost seven of his family members to Nazi death camps.
His grandfather, Morris Malenicky, was taken to the German concentration camp in Schlieben, where he was forced to manufacture rockets for the German army.
He wrote: “I would say more about how insensitive to pain it is, but sometimes things are what they seem and people are what they seem. You are stupid! Stupid! Stupid! & # 39;
The TV judge wasn't the only one to condemn the tweet, and others were appalled that Le Tissier would call the Holocaust to support his views.
When a user pointed out that the reference to wearing face masks was derived from the original post posted under the video of the train dispute, Le Tisser doubled down and replied, “No mention of masks by me or the quote. So a jump. & # 39;
Another direct response to Le Tissier was: “You may be ignorant rather than deliberately offensive, but please don't call the Holocaust to support your insane views on masks. Thank you in advance, ”the former Southampton player simply replied with a series of smiling faces.
While Le Tissier did not delete the post, it eventually returned to its intended meaning.
He then wrote: “It seems that many bots and trolls tweet me about masks! Even so, I checked it again and still can't find any reference to masks in the original tweet! & # 39;
One user replied, & # 39; I mean the post you quoted is in response to someone being removed for not wearing a mask. There is the reference. & # 39;
Another said, “I sincerely hope that you will take some time to read about the Holocaust and the rise of the Nazis. In Nottingham, not far away, there is a Holocaust memorial center. Maybe you will visit one day. After that, you'll understand why you should apologize for this tweet. & # 39;
When the review surfaced in Le Tissier, he tried to point out that he hadn't mentioned any masks
When Le Tissier was challenged about the Holocaust tip, he replied with smiling faces
The incident joins a long series of controversies that have been wooed by Le Tissier. The most recent of these was questioning his former employer Sky Sports' support for the Black Lives Matter movement and declaring that he would reassess his personal demeanor.
The 51-year-old attacked the movement's "left-wing extremist ideology" – when the black soccer player Karl Henry described the group as "divisive".
Last month, Le Tissier announced that he would temporarily end social media and said he has been repeatedly attacked by cyber bullies trying to force him out of his job.
Throughout the year, Le Tissier had spoken out repeatedly on the issue of the global coronavirus pandemic and made questionable comments on how the situation should be dealt with.
He urged fans "to look beyond government headlines and propaganda" and raised the issue of herd immunity.
After personal criticism, the retired playmaker published a detailed statement on his position before later denying that he identified himself as an "anti-Vaxxer".
Le Tissier had written: “Yes, I have made mistakes and errors of judgment in the past, which I regret, but I believe that the good I have done far outweighs the mistakes.
Last month, Le Tissier was banned from his role as an expert on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday Show
Jeff Stelling, who anchors the popular show, described it as "one of my saddest days ever".
Le Tissier broke his Twitter silence on Wednesday to thank those he worked with
“I have great empathy for anyone who loses someone close to them for health reasons. I recently lost my grandpa so I know how it feels.
“You trolls and bots out there trying to disparage me with your derogatory remarks to find out that I'm a carefree person who has no empathy. You couldn't be further from the truth, and I am incredibly sorry that there is so little joy in your life that you resort to it.
"I really hope you will be happy soon."
After Le Tissier was fired from Sky Sports on August 26th, he made a brief statement online: “I enjoyed my time at Sky Sports, time to look forward to the next challenge in life. Thanks for all the support over the years and special thanks to the backroom team … good luck everyone have a great day. & # 39;
His release was followed by strong words from Ian Wright, who criticized the "racially motivated" abuse of black and female experts after Sky Sports decided to part ways with Le Tissier and colleagues Phil Thompson and Charlie Nicholas.
The three former footballers were familiar faces to viewers every weekend on Football Saturday, watching for live updates on UK results.
In a revision, Le Tissier (51), Thompson (66) and Nicholas (58) were excluded from their roles in the show hosted by Jeff Stelling (65) before the coming season.
Black ex-footballers such as Micah Richards (32), Alex Scott (35), Clinton Morrison (41) and Sol Campbell (45) have been suggested as possible replacements.
However, the changes met with widespread criticism and prompted former Arsenal striker Wright, 56, to overhaul his car and post a heartfelt video online in an attempt to stop their "racism".
Wright said, “Racism is going through the roof today. Can someone just answer me: What do Micah Richards, Alex Scott, Sol Campbell, Clinton Morrison, or any other black expert have to do with Sky's decision to get rid of these guys?
“All because three middle-aged white men have the sack. I kiss my teeth, say Raasclaat and all these things. What did they do, what did these people do?
“Because a black person or woman could get the opportunity to do this job. You might get a chance to do this show. Why are people upset? & # 39;
Le Tissier has not been involved in football since then, but remains the official ambassador for the Premier League team Southampton.
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