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Page last updated at 13:18 GMT, Thursday, 27 January 2011

Celtic's Ki celebration 'highlights Scottish abuse'

Ki Sung-Yeung was on target against Japan
Japanese media reacted badly to Ki Sung-Yeung's goal celebration

The Asian Football Confederation will take no action over Ki Sung-Yeung's perceived racist celebration following his goal against Japan.

And the South Korean authorities claim the Celtic midfielder's intention was to highlight abuse he has received while playing in Scotland.

But Show Racism the Red Card chief executive Ged Grebby questioned Ki's justification for his behaviour.

"It doesn't ring true to me that that's what it was about," he said.

"My understanding is he has done it to offend the Japanese and then it has caused a controversy."

After converting a penalty in Tuesday's semi-final, Ki appeared to impersonate a monkey, sparking outrage in Japan.

After a 2-2 draw, Japan won the match on penalties.

A Korea Football Association spokesman said: "The treatment he got from the Scottish league, especially in the away games, the people who made noises like the sound of the monkeys in Scotland when he played away games, that is something he wanted to highlight.

"Even though they call him a monkey as an Asian, he wanted to show how strong they are in Asia. That was the main intention."

Ki may have been referring to incidents during Celtic's 3-0 Scottish Premier League win over St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park on 30 October.

Following the match, St Johnstone issued a statement on their official website to say they would be investigating claims that Celtic players were subjected to "racist noises" during the match.

The Japanese Football Association accepted their Korean counterparts' explanation of the Ki incident and, like the AFC, have no intention of pursuing the matter further. The AFC also confirmed there has been no contact from Fifa over the issue.

"We are aware of the goal celebration but we don't think it impacts on any country," said AFC tournament director Tokuaki Suzuki.

"The issue, according to my understanding, has already been resolved after communication between the Japan Football Association and the Korea Football Association.

"AFC will not take any legal action in this matter."

Japan will meet Australia in Saturday's final in Qatar, while South Korea take on Uzbekistan for third place.



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