The Galaxy were flooded with angry calls and messages demanding the team release midfielder Aleksandar Katai after this wife, Tea, made an inflammatory post on social media that appeared to make light of the protests and looting that occurred in the wake of George Floyd’s death in police custody last week in Minneapolis.
The first post is a screenshot from a video of police attempting to drive an SUV through protesters in New York with text, written in Serbian, that translates as “kill the … !” The second shows what appears to be a looter running away with boxes of Nike shoes below an English-language caption reading “Black Nikes Matter.”
Both posts, which appeared to go up late Tuesday, have been removed.
Hours after the team was alerted about the posts, the Galaxy released a four-paragraph statement in which it condemned them as “racial and violent” and said it would meet with Aleksandar Katai on Thursday to discuss further action.
“The Galaxy stands firmly against racism of any kind including that which suggests violence or seeks to demean the efforts of those in pursuit of racial inequality.”
The Galaxy said Katai was in Southern California, where he has been taking part in voluntary workouts along with teammates at Dignity Health Sports Park, while his wife is in Chicago, where Katai played before being traded in December.
“He isn’t a good fit for us,” one person wrote on reddit after viewing the posts by Tea Katai. “We are multicultural and this makes me wonder what he really things (sic) of the fan base. He needs to go.”
“Wow, this is not good given everything that is going on in the country,” wrote another. “No room for this in our club. LA Galaxy needs to address this stat before it spirals out of control.”
Katai, 29, a Serbian national-team player, started both of the Galaxy’s games this season. He had 18 goals and 12 assists in 62 games over two seasons in Chicago.