Manchester City have told £52million new boy Benjamin Mendy to carry on tweeting.
The French full-back, who is recovering from a thigh injury he was nursing when he signed from Monaco last month, mocked Lewis Dunk on his social media account after the Brighton defender scored an own goal in his team’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of Pep Guardiola’s side yesterday.
BT Sport pundit Steven Gerrard accused Mendy of being disrespectful when he posted a message saying “Bullet header” together with three crying emojis.
Former England midfielder Gerrard said: “I don’t like to see that, there’s no need for it.
“There’s going to be a time when Mendy makes a mistake and he will be wide open from criticism himself. For me, it’s a cheap shot.”
Former City midfielder Frank Lampard agreed with Gerrard.
But the Etihad club feel that Mendy has done nothing wrong – and have no plans to censure his social media postings.
Mendy developed a reputation at Monaco for being a larger-than-life character and has more than 290,000 Twitter followers.
City do give advice to players about what the club deem acceptable to post on social media.
But the reaction to Mendy’s post inside the Etihad’s corridors of power has been one of mirth rather than outrage.
A City insider said: “Benjamin has done absolutely nothing wrong and we see no reason to speak to him.
“He enjoys having a social media presence to communicate with fans and we would encourage that.
“It was nothing more than a gentle joke and the reaction to it – particularly from some TV pundits – has been way over the top.”
Mendy later went online to post (sic): “that’s called humor u should try it sometimes (+ that might come back & people joke about it, that’s ok its all fun)”
And he then apologised by Tweeting (sic): “sorry for the few people who got offended…. was just banter nothing personal.”