Leeds United director Edoardo Cellino, the son of owner Massimo Cellino, has been charged by the Football Association over offensive social media comments in which he called a Leeds fan a “spastic”.
Edoardo, who has been a member of United’s board since his father bought the club in April 2014, was cited over remarks made by him on Facebook and Instagram last month.
In angry online exchanges, Edoardo described one female fan as a “whale” and called another fan a “spastic” and a “moron”.
He later apologised for his comments, telling the Daily Mail: “I would like to apologise for any offence that I have caused.
“After receiving a lot of abusive messages my emotions got the better of me and I reacted in a way that was unprofessional.
“I believe the messages were private but I know I should not have done this. I did not fully understand the severity of the words used as English is not my first language. Again, I can only apologise.”
The FA said today that Cellino’s offence was seen as an “aggravated breach” due to the reference to disability.
He has until next Monday, April 11, to respond to the charge.
An FA statement read: “Leeds United director Edoardo Cellino has been charged by the FA in relation to comments made on social media.
“It is alleged the comments were abusive and/or insulting and/or improper in contravention of Rule E3(1).
“It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3(1) is an ‘aggravated breach’ as defined in Rule E3(2), as it includes a reference to disability.”
Asked to respond to the charge, Leeds said Edoardo had apologised previously and made no further comment.
Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston was hit with a six-week ban from football last year after being found guilty of calling a supporter a “massive retard” in a text message.