The FA have given Bernardo Silva more time to respond to a misconduct charge in relation to his controversial tweet to Manchester City team-mate Benjamin Mendy.
The midfielder tweeted an image of a young Mendy alongside a picture of a mascot of Spanish confectionery brand Conguitos last month.
Silva was charged by the FA who described the tweet as an ‘aggravated breach’ as it ‘included reference, whether expressed or implied, to race and/or colour and/or ethnic origin’.
Anti-discrimination campaign group Kick It Out called on the FA to take retrospective action against Silva the day after the tweet was posted.
The Portuguese could face a six-game ban if he is found guilty.
Despite the backlash, City boss Pep Guardiola came to the defence of his player.
He said: “Bernardo is one of the most lovely people I have ever met in my life.
“He speaks four or five languages – that is the best way to understand how open-minded he is and one of his best friends is Mendy. He is like a brother for him.
“The image for the two is not about the colour of the skin.
“If (a charge) happens it would be a mistake because Bernardo is an exceptional person.”
It is understood Silva wrote to the FA to express regret over the Mendy tweet, while the France left-back also contacted the governing body to say that no personal offence had been caused.
Raheem Sterling, who has taken a strong public stance on racism in the past year, did not feel Silva’s tweet was racist.
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He told Sky Sports: “I can see exactly the point where some people can get touchy-feely on it, but I feel in that situation Bernardo made a joke to his friend.
“He’s not referred to his skin colour, he’s not referred to his lips in both pictures, they’ve both got small heads and the most important thing for me is that he didn’t refer to a colour.
“We all know, Benjamin knows, everyone can see that Mendy is a black lad. We’ve got to be proud to be black as well.
“If someone refers to our skin colour with an image, I’d be upset about that – we know what skin colour we are.
“But he hasn’t referred to his skin colour, that’s the most important thing I feel about the situation.
“It’s really sad to see someone like Bernardo, the whole week, be kind of down about it because he’s not that way inclined.”