A predominantly Muslim football team has been thrown out of a local amateur league in Paris after it refused to play against a gay team.
“The Creteil Bebel team is excluded from the Leisure Football Commission for refusing a match and for making discriminatory comments,” said the Leisure Football Commission on its website.
There had initially been some confusion over the team’s position when it appeared that it had reversed its original anti-gay stance but, on Monday, the players ultimately decided not to face the gay team, named Paris Foot Gay.
“Because of the principles of our team, which is a team of devout Muslims, we can’t play against you. Our convictions are much more important than a simple football match,” the Creteil Bebel team said in an e-mail sent to Paris Foot Gay.
In an earlier statement, a lawyer for Creteil Bebel said that the gay team’s name “does not seem to reflect our vision of sport, which for us is free from any sectarian, ethnic or religious slant”. He denied that the team’s decision was homophobic.