Former Manchester City defender Benjamin Mendy has been found not guilty of rape charges by the Chester Crown Court on Friday.
The French international was accused of raping a woman at his home in Cheshire in October 2020, as well as attempting to rape another woman two years earlier. Mendy has consistently denied both charges and maintained that the encounters were consensual.
Following the court’s verdict, several football players, including Memphis Depay and Paul Pogba, have expressed their reactions to the news. Depay took to his official Twitter account to share his thoughts on the outcome:
“Benjamin Mendy, All cases dismissed. So what are we doing now? Who is going to help this brother heal? Who’s going to be responsible for the damage on his name? How is he going to have his career back? Many years of investment to become a professional football player…. Now what!? I’ve never touched on this subject because I didn’t know all the details, but I’ve spoken to him once through FaceTime while behind bars and faced him on the pitch a couple of times.. I didn’t see any evil in the man. We can’t accept this to happen to us as athletes. Who’s going to stand up for us in the time of need not when the damage is already done? Don’t turn your head, people.”
Paul Pogba also reacted to the news on his official Instagram account. The French international posted a screenshot of a call with Mendy and shared his happiness for his friend on Instagram:
“Al Hamdullilah so happy for you bro.. all the people that were talking bad about you Now I wanna see them cleaning your name. Can’t wait to see you on the pitch again.”
Mendy, who became the Premier League’s most expensive defender when he joined Manchester City from Monaco for £52 million in 2017, has won three league titles with the club and was part of France’s World Cup-winning squad in 2018.
The court’s verdict brings an end to the legal proceedings against Mendy, clearing his name of the allegations.