Anwar El Ghazi, a Dutch attacker, was suspended by Mainz 05 on Tuesday due to what the Bundesliga team deemed to be “unacceptable” social media commentary on the Israel-Hamas conflict.
El Ghazi erased the message after joining Mainz in September.
On October 7, Hamas militants carried out the bloodiest Palestinian militant attack on Israel in its history, killing 1,300 Israelis.
In response, Israel launched many airstrikes that resulted in the deaths of over 2,800 Palestinians.
“Mainz 05 respects that there are different perspectives on the complex Middle East conflict that has been going on for decades,” the club said in a statement posted on X, formerly Twitter.
“However, the club clearly distances itself from the content of the post as it does not reflect the values of our club.”
The club gave no additional information regarding what El Ghazi had said in the removed post.
El Ghazi, a former winger for Aston Villa, claimed to have “received some negative messages around my social media posts” in a different post on X on Thursday.
“I want to make clear that I’m standing for peace above everything,” the 28-year-old said. He also called for “more empathy, deepening our knowledge about the history of this conflict.”
With two points after seven games, Mainz is in the bottom two of the Bundesliga and in 17th place.