Burnley manager Sean Dyche has insisted Andre Gray’s apology was “authentic” after abusive and homophobic tweets posted by the striker were uncovered.
Tweets sent in 2012 were circulated online after Gray scored his first Premier League goal on Saturday in a 2-0 win over Liverpool at Turf Moor.
The striker has been charged by the FA over the incident and the 25-year-old issued an apology on social media on Saturday, insisting he “was a completely different person [then] to the man I am now”.
— Andre Gray (@AndreGray7) August 20, 2016
Speaking ahead of Burnley’s League Cup tie at Accrington Stanley on Wednesday, Dyche backed his star forward, who fired the Clarets to promotion from the Championship last season.
“We spoke on Saturday evening and he made it clear to me what he wanted to do and how he wanted to conduct his statement,” Dyche told the Burnley Express.
“It was authentic to him and very clear. He has moved on a long way in his life. This was a reminder, four years ago, he’s a different person now.
“A lot has gone on his life to get to where he’s got to and I think he made that clear.
“I think, I hope, people will realise it was authentic, because it was.”
Gray, who was playing for now-defunct non-league side Hinckley Town when the tweets were posted, has until August 31 to respond to the charges of misconduct brought against him by the FA.