SMITHCOPY

Agent Phil Smith, alongside Claudio Ranieri

The football agent who was the victim of racial abuse in the Cardiff City text message scandal has told Jewish News he doesn’t believe either Malkay Mackay or Iain Moody are anti-Semitic.

Phil Smith was the victim of one of the offensive texts exchanged between Cardiff’s former manager and head of recruitment, which read: “Go on, fat Phil. Nothing like a Jew that sees money slipping through his fingers”.

However, Smith doesn’t believe either man is racist. He said: “I don’t think they are and I’m not going to cast any judgement on them whatsoever, that’s a bit unfair. They’ve made life very uncomfortable for themselves, without me adding to it.

“What’s irresponsible is for something like that to find its way out and the only thing they could have done to prevent it coming out was not to say it in the first place. Whether they meant to say it or not, it came out, you just hope they didn’t mean it, and I don’t think they did, but only they can answer that.”

While the two are now the subject of a Football Association, Smith says he won’t be looking to take the matter any further. “I’m not demanding action be taken against them, it really has nothing to do with me,” he says. “I just believe we have to be very responsible in today’s society with all the different discrimination around, the last thing we need is to have figureheads spouting their opinions.”

Adding neither had been in touch with him to apologise – and that he doesn’t expect them to, he said: “I don’t even know which one it was. I presume it’s Iain Moody as Malky doesn’t know me well enough to say something like that. If he did I really wouldn’t have appreciated it, joking or not.

“It wasn’t so much what was said or that I haven’t had an apology, I don’t care about that, I’m too thick-skinned for that. I think what really annoyed me was how they tried to pass it of as banter.”
Admitting he did feel ‘disappointed, angry and hacked off’ by the messages at first, he said: “I thought initially I’d ride it out, but then the PC brigade got hold of it – and rightly so.

“Most times when someone calls you a Jew it’s out of ignorance and with all that’s going on around the world with the anti-Semitic slants, I just felt it was irresponsible that something which might have been said out of jest had got out. It started to make me angry.
“Football’s so big and has to be seen as setting an example. This type of stuff can have an effect on the man on the street and the last thing we need is to have this type of talk perpetrated by people who should know better.”