Football: Whelan will quit Wigan if FA take action over 'racism' row

LONDON (AFP) - Wigan chairman Dave Whelan will quit the Championship club if the Football Association punish him for the controversial comments which saw him labelled "a racist" by Cardiff owner Vincent Tan.

Whelan sparked the row in a newspaper interview in which he was defending his decision to hire former Cardiff boss Malky Mackay.

Mackay was recruited by Wigan despite being under investigation by the FA for allegedly sending racist and anti-semitic texts, and Whelan responded to criticism by telling The Guardian: "I think Jewish people do chase money more than everybody else." Whelan also said he did not view the word 'chink' - the term by which Mackay allegedly referred to Tan in a text message - as offensive.

Malaysian businessman Tan, who sacked Mackay last December, told Sky Sports News on Friday: "Can you imagine if Mr Whelan was the head of the FA? Here we have a racist chairman hiring a racist manager. All the fans in Wigan now think it's okay to be racist."

The FA has said its investigation into Whelan's comments about Jewish and Chinese people will be treated "as a priority".

It has written to the 77-year-old to seek his take on events.

But Whelan told ITV News on Saturday: "If the FA look into my affairs - and they were to find me guilty, which I hope they don't and I don't see anything like that happening because I'm absolutely anti-racist, always have been, always will be - however, if they have any questions I'm willing to answer it and, should they even suggest I'm guilty I would immediately resign from my position as chairman of Wigan Athletic."

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