By Dave Woods

5th Nov, 2019 | 1:32pm

MOT View: Casilla case unlikely to be over anytime soon after FA charge

Leeds keeper Kiko Casilla was charged on Monday with racially abusing Charlton’s Jonathan Leko in the Championship game on September 28. 

In a statement on the official FA website, the charge was confirmed and Casilla has until November 12 to respond.

The statement read: “Kiko Casilla has been charged with a breach of FA Rule E3. It is alleged that, contrary to Rule E3(1), the Leeds United goalkeeper used abusive and/or insulting words towards a Charlton Athletic player during an EFL Championship fixture on 28 September 2019.

“It is further alleged that the words constitute an ‘Aggravated Breach’, which is defined in Rule E3(2), as they made reference to race and/or colour and/or ethnic origin.”

This does not mean Casilla has been found guilty. It means that the charge has been alleged and it will be up to an independent panel to decide.

The charge has been levelled after the FA interviewed Casilla, Leko, and Macauley Bonne, another Charlton player who is crucially backing up Leko’s story.

In a short statement on the Leeds website, the club acknowledged the charge but said Casilla “strenuously denies the allegation and has proactively worked with the FA during their investigation to date.”

He has asked for a personal hearing and in the meantime he will be selected for the first-team as normal.

Given that Bonne has given evidence too, the case against Casilla would seem strong. But, the fact that he’s denying it and the club are supporting him suggests that it’s not as clearcut as it might seem from the FA statement.

It’s entirely possible that Casilla could be cleared – similar to how the case against Giuseppe Bellusci was dropped after the Leeds defender was accused of racism against Cameron Jerome. It was decided that what Jerome thought he heard wasn’t what Bellusci had said.

The most recent high-profile case in the UK saw Fernando Forestieri’s appeal dismissed after he was handed a six-game ban for racist abuse. That case came down to his word against that of Mansfield’s Krystian Pearce.

Six games is the minimum length of ban that Casilla would serve if found guilty but it does look like the process could be a long one, with the keeper requesting a personal hearing and likely to appeal any subsequent decision.

Like the Bellusci/Jerome case it seems that Leko and Bonne are convinced something racist was said, while Casilla is adamant that he’s innocent.

This is a case that doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon.

In other Leeds news, Paul Robinson claims one area of Leeds game ‘not good enough’ despite win v QPR