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Leicester City Trio Await Decision on Their Future

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Leicester youths Tom Hopper, Adam Smith and James Pearson have been sent home from the team’s trip to Thailand, following a claim of their involvement in a racist sex tape.

The three squad development players, one of which being first team manager Nigel Pearson’s son, have been sent home ahead of the rest of the team from the tour and wait for the decision on their future following an internal investigation from the club.

This incident came about when a leaked video of the players was released by the press, which seemed to show their participation in an orgy with three Thai women. One player was heard using a racial slur towards one of the women, provoking this investigation by Leicester City football club.

A statement released by Leicester City on Sunday evening stated the players had offered their apologies to the women involved, to the club and its owners, to the fans and to their families.

Many Leicester fans have called for the players’ contracts to be cancelled and for them to be released by the club, as their disgusting behaviour has brought shame and embarrassment to a well respected football club. This could well have jeopardised a well-built relationship between the club, its owners and the people of Thailand.

The Foxes’ billionaire owners, father and son Vichai and Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha have invested millions into the football club, paying off the stadium debts and treating the players to holidays in their home country on numerous occasions. The conduct of three young professionals is a mark of disrespect to the owners and their people, something which will be taken very seriously by the club.

Due to one of the players being the son of the manager, Nigel Pearson is going to have to tackle this as a manager rather than as a father, taking the impact on his club into consideration.

Defender James Pearson’s contract runs out this summer, so he could easily be let go once it has finished, but striker Tom Hopper and goalkeeper Adam Smith still have one year left on their contracts. An early termination of a contract usually means compensation for the player, so the club will take their behaviour into consideration in the investigation in order to make the correct decision on their future at Leicester City.

The statement released by Leicester City reiterated the club’s commitment to promoting equality in football and in wider society. Nigel Pearson has strong views with his campaigning, becoming actively involved in football’s Kick It Out scheme which aims to kick racism out of the game. The news of the three players, particularly his son, will come as a great shock to the Foxes’ manager and he will no doubt want to carry out the appropriate action.

The decision to keep or release the players will be made by the club following their investigation, and now the players are back in England the FA may even conduct their own investigation of the incident and deploy disciplinary action.

Whatever the outcome of either investigation, it can be stressed that the actions of the players should not be associated with Leicester City football club. The players and staff have a great relationship with the club’s owners and respect the people of Thailand, and the irresponsible actions of three “professionals” should not be allowed to damage the growing positive reputation of the club.

Should the players be released, hopefully the club can get back their successes and the Foxes can continue to develop their relationship with the owners in another season in the Premier League.

Adam Smith James Pearson King Power Nigel Pearson Thailand Tom Hopper

About Mark Sheppard

I am an 18-year-old Journalism and Media student at De Montfort University, Leicester. I enjoy writing, especially about sport because my interests involve football, snooker, rugby, F1 and tennis.

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