An expert lip-reader is ’97 per cent confident’ used the word ‘rapist’ in a heated clash with .
During Thursday’s La Liga match between and Getafe, Bellingham and Greenwood were on opposing sides for the first time since their moves to last summer.
to join Getafe on a season-long loan deal following the conclusion of an internal club investigation into the player’s conduct.
In January 2022, the striker was charged with attempted rape, assault and coercive behaviour. . After major backlash from supporters, United opted against reintegrating him back into their squad
During Thursday’s match, Bellingham, who has been an instant hit in Spain following his £90million move from Borussia Dortmund, landed a crunching tackle on Greenwood close to the touchline, forcing the ball out of play.
showed Bellingham mouthing a two-syllable word in Greenwood’s direction immediately after the incidentwith fans suggesting he uttered the word ‘rapist’.
While audio did not pick up Bellingham’s comment, expert witness and forensic lip-reader Jeremy Freeman was able to identify with near-certainty what was said.
He told the : ‘After carefully analysing the clip, I am 97 per cent confident that the spoken word is “rapist”, particularly when considering the context in which it was used.
‘The visual cues of the lips indicate the presence of the ‘R’ and ‘P’ sounds, and the word appears to end sharply.
‘Additionally, the speaker seems to have a pronounced Brummie accent, which I factored into my interpretation,’ Freeman added.
‘Given the clarity of these visual markers and the absence of any viable alternative interpretation, I am quite certain of this conclusion.’
Following the incident, Getafe have requested to the La Liga delegate present at Thursday’s game that Bellingham’s alleged comments be included in the referee’s official match report which could lead to an investigation.
Bellingham, 20, could be handed a potential suspension as a result if charged and found guilty by La Liga. It remains unclear if officials will take action.