MLS: Logan, Gorter statements regarding Oct. 6 New England training session incident

Major League Soccer Commissioner Douglas G. Logan today issued the following statement regarding the incident that occurred at the New England Revolution's training session on Tuesday, October 6: "I was asked by the New England Revolution to investigate an incident that occurred in an intrasquad training session on October 6, 1998. Disciplinary issues within a team are usually disposed of by local management. However, in this instance, due to the gravity of the allegations, I felt that action was warranted by my office. "I have thoroughly investigated the matter. The facts appear to be indisputable. At a training session at Babson College, Mr. Edwin Gorter used an offensive racial epithet directed at his teammate, Mr. David Nakhid. I have met with the principals of the New England Revolution and have received their input regarding this incident. I have met with Mr. Gorter personally and he has admitted his misconduct. Mr. Gorter has expressed sincere remorse for his actions and has indicated that he has attempted to apologize personally to Mr. Nakhid. Mr. Nakhid was invited to present his views personally to me but regrettably refused to meet with me at this time. However, Mr. Nakhid was interviewed by MLS Senior Vice President of Player Operations Ivan Gazidis and that interview supported the facts concerning the incident. "Major League Soccer has no tolerance for actions of this type. We are proud of the cultural and racial diversity of our players, coaches, employees and fans. We will not tolerate expressions of racial hatred by our players or employees on or off the field. "I have decided to take the following disciplinary actions with Mr. Gorter: A Mr. Gorter is to issue a public apology. B Mr. Gorter will be suspended from the first two New England Revolution regular season games in the 1999 season. C Mr. Gorter will be fined the sum of $20,000, the highest fine ever meted out by MLS. D The fine collected from Mr. Gorter will be used to hire the Teamwork Leadership Institute of the National Consortium for Academics and Sports headed by Dr. Richard Lapchick to conduct seminars on diversity sensitivity for all 12 of our teams during the 1999 preseason. The balance of the cost of these sessions will be borne by the league. "I find the conduct of Mr. Gorter and any allegations of racially offensive language in this league totally detestable. MLS is a league that is based on inclusion and a societal symbol that all races and cultures can live, work, and play together in harmony. Any future deviation from that purpose will be dealt with harshly." New England Revolution midfielder/defender Edwin Gorter issued the following statement: "Tuesday in a team scrimmage, I became involved in an altercation with my teammate, David Nakhid. During that altercation, I used an offensive racial epithet, which I deeply regret. I apologize unreservedly to David, to my teammates, to the New England Revolution organization and fans and to the League for my action."
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