The Black Gold Derby between Tulsa and the Energy FC is the biggest rival for our city's team. That rivalry took a racist turn Saturday night.
Energy player Atiba Harris tweeted that he was called the N word not once, but twice on the field.
He added that this nonsense has to stop...love over hate.
The Energy FC's owner Bob Funk, Jr. issued a statement on the matter Sunday saying, “There is no room in our sport or society for racism. Targeting such hateful and hurtful remarks to a player, fan or anyone goes against the values and principles of Energy FC. We stand solidly with our player who reported the use of offensive racial remarks by a Roughnecks player during last night’s match. No amount of investigation is going to question the veracity of what our player reported. If the situation were to be reversed, I can assure the player would be suspended indefinitely from our team and most likely dismissed. This unfortunate event presents an opportunity for the USL to make it clearly and cogently known that we will never accept one iota of hate speech among our owners and players. We need to stand together against any demeaning speech and rededicate ourselves to being respectful to others both in words and deeds.”
It didn't take long for the Tulsa Roughnecks to respond. President Barry Williams issued this statement.
"The Tulsa Roughnecks announced today the termination of Fabian Bastidas’ contract with the club following his use of foul and abusive language during last night’s match with OKC Energy FC. The player’s actions are a violation of the league’s zero-tolerance policy, and do not represent the beliefs and values of our club – nor the community we represent. As an organization, we sincerely apologize to Atiba Harris and OKC Energy FC, and will do what is necessary to prevent this type of behavior in the future."
The Energy return to their home pitch May 4th against the Tacoma Defiance.