In a breaking news story this evening, a L’Équipe investigation published tomorrow will reveal that PSG’s claim that whilst racial discrimination had been occurring at the club between 2013 and 2018 owing to the actions of one individual, Marc Westerloppe, who was involved in recruitment at the capital club and is now at Rennes, is not the full story.
Mediapart, who put out the story originally last week, unfurled the fact that scouting sheet practices illegally required scouts to note down the ethnicity of players as either “French”, “Maghrebi”, “West Indian” and “Black African” in the Paris-Province area.
However, the L’Équipe investigation published in full tomorrow will reveal that these practices were also used for the entire PSG recruitment team in the Île-de-France area.
The French newspaper has been able to access scouting sheets for scouts working in this area of France for the club, which requires recruiters to select 1 of 5 race types for each player they are scouting: “BC” (white), “BK” (black), “BR” (beur – Arabic), “M” (for “mixed race”) and “AS” (for “Asian). Such practices are illegal, according to French law.
PSG have since put out a statement in response to recognise that “these scouting sheets were distributed throughout the Île-de-France” and claimed to ensure that their “internal investigation demonstrates that there has not been a proven case of discrimination.”
“The investigation has been based on an analysis of email exchanges and a series of interviews conducted with employees of the Club in charge of recruitment in the youth academy.”
L’Équipe’s investigation has been able to confirm that this allegedly racist scouting sheet policy continued after Sporting Director Olivier Létang’s reign. This scouting policy was ceased in the Paris-Province area in Spring 2018, where the initial sheets were uncovered by Mediapart last week, but L’Équipe claim that the sheets in the rest of the Île-de-France region continued to be in circulation after that date, potentially up to when Mediapart first asked PSG about the claims just a few weeks ago. This massively contradicts PSG’s previous claim that the scouting network and practices were completely overhauled when new SD Antero Henrique joined the club in the summer of 2017.
More staggeringly, documents that L’Équipe consulted regarding these allegedly racist scouting sheets go as far back to 2002 – this would suggest that illegal activity had been occurring inside the club for 16 years.
Mediapart allege tonight that since they interviewed PSG, that the club has been constantly lying to the media, to such an extent that they have even turned the government against the French outlet, with Marlene Schiappa, the Minister of Discrimination, telling France Info that “there is no reason not to trust PSG” – just yesterday…