(CNN)Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva has been reported to the English Football Association (FA) for posting an alleged racist tweet, according to anti-discrimination charity Kick it Out.
— Man City | Superbia (@SuperbiaProeIia) September 22, 2019 The Portuguese midfielder posted a photo believed to be City teammate Benjamin Mendy as a child, with the caption: “Guess who?” and an image of the mascot for Spanish chocolate brand Conguitos.Bernardo, who has been heavily criticized on social media, later deleted the tweet and posted another saying: “Can’t even joke with a friend these days… You guys…”Should the FA decide to take action, Bernardo could face a fine or a ban. In July, the FA increased its punishment for discriminatory behavior to a minimum six-game ban for first-time offenders.France’s Mendy replied to the tweet with a series of laughing emojis and clapping hands, with the caption: “1-0 for you will see.”Read MoreREAD: How the scourge of racism continues to tarnish English footballREAD: Serie A should ‘condemn racists’ — FIFA boss ‘Vital to challenge'”We are extremely disappointed to see the tweet posted by Bernardo Silva, which has since been deleted,” Kick it Out said in a statement. “Racist stereotypes are never acceptable as ‘banter,’ and we’re shocked that someone who is a role model to millions has failed to understand the discriminatory nature of his post.”The FA have been notified and we believe that retrospective action should be taken, including mandatory education — which is vital to challenge offensive behavior such as this.”READ: Tammy Abraham’s mother wept over racial abuse of her sonREAD: Monkey chants ‘not racist,’ says Inter Milan fansAccording to Kick It Out, reports of discrimination rose by 32% in 2018/19 compared to the previous season. Racism remains the most common form of discrimination and has risen “alarmingly,” Kick It Out says, with reports increasing by 43%.Bernardo has previously referenced Mandy’s skin color in posts on social media. In an earlier video from his Instagram account, he can be heard asking why Mendy was naked when he was wearing a black T-shirt and shorts.