Egyptian footballer Sam Morsy speaks out for Palestine after EFL draw for Ipswich
Ipswich Town captain Sam Morsy, 32, was interviewed by broadcaster Sky Sports following the 1–1 result against Leicester City in the English Football League Championship.
"We've got the privilege to be here. Thirty thousand [fans in attendance] and an amazing team, while the plight continues in Palestine," Morsy said after the home fixture.
"We're the lucky ones. We get to play football for a living. And yeah, we drew. We're doing well. We're enjoying it. We're very blessed, very privileged to… be in this position."
It came amid Israel's indiscriminate war on Gaza, which has so far killed more than 21,300 people and seen places of worship, ambulances, and hospitals attacked.
Morsy, who was born in England but plays for Egypt on the international scene, took a shot during stoppage time in the second half that was deflected twice before hitting the net. It was recorded as a Leicester own goal.
The Ipswich captain will have more opportunities to make the difference for his team after he reportedly ruled himself out of Egypt's side for the African Cup of Nations, taking place from mid-January to mid-February.
The East Anglian Daily Times newspaper said on Thursday that it understands Morsy has told the Egyptian Football Association he isn't interested in being selected to serve a minor function and would prefer to help his club side work towards promotion to the Premier League.
But not everything has gone the way of Morsy and his British team, which is currently in second place in the Championship league table.
The official spokesperson for the Football Association (FA), which governs English football, said on Wednesday that Morsy had been banned for one match and given a £5,000 ($6,400) fine after a 9 December win over Middlesborough.
"The Ipswich Town midfielder admitted that he acted in an improper manner and/or used abusive words and/or behaviour towards a match official in or around the changing rooms, following the completion of the fixture," the FA spokesperson said on social media platform X.
Ipswich Town's media and communications director Marcus Nash confirmed Morsy had been given a one-match ban with immediate effect.
Nash said the Egyptian international "accepts the charge", adding that neither the club nor Morsy would comment further.
"Christmas is a time when families get together and celebrate," he wrote to his more than 63 million followers on Instagram and almost 19 million on X.
"With the brutal war going on in the Middle East, especially the death and destruction in Gaza, this year we get to Christmas with very heavy hearts and we share the pain of those families who are grieving the loss of their loved ones.
"Please do not forget them and do not get used to their suffering. Merry Christmas."