Jens Lehmann has been fired from a consultancy role at Hertha Berlin. And as he resigns from the Supervisory Board of the Bundesliga club, Lehmann apologizes for racist message.
Lehmann joined the Hertha Berlin Supervisory Board in May 2020, and he took over from Jurgen Klinsmann in doing so.
Now however, the former Arsenal goalkeeper has resigned from Hertha Berlin after he was caught in a racism storm.
He messaged fellow former German international Dennis Aogo, who now works for Sky Sports, on WhatsApp, and the latter exposed his racist text.
The remarks Lehmann made about Aogo, whether intentional or unintentional, whether aggressive or not, carry strikingly racist overtones.
Aogo Exposes Lehmann
Former Hamburg and Schalke left-back Dennis Aogo is now a football pundit for Sky Germany.
Retiring from play last year, Aogo was covering Manchester City’s Champions League semi-final clash with Paris Saint-Germain (2-0) last night.
After the game, Aogo revealed that he had received an offensive message from Lehmann.
The message, citing the colour of his skin, was likely meant for someone else, however.
Nonetheless, alarmed at the racist words, Aogo posted a screenshot of their chat on his Instagram story. The story read: “Is Dennis actually your token black guy?”
The 34-year-old also tagged his compatriot in the post.
And the story’s caption asked Lehmann: “WOW, are you serious? This message wasn’t supposed to go to me I guess.”
Hertha BSC have since sacked Lehmann from the supervisory board at the Bundesliga club.
Lehmann Apologizes for Racist Message
Lehmann tried to clarify his comments during an interview with German publication BILD on Wednesday morning.
But before this public interview, he issued a private apology to Aogo.
“I have already spoken to Dennis on the phone and asked him to forgive me if my statement came across as disrespectful,” he said in the interview.
“It was not meant that way at all, but in a positive way. As a Sky expert, he is knowledgeable and very strong in his appearance. And therefore also increases the quota,” he explained his text.
“That’s what I meant to say but it was unfortunate of me to put it. Since the WhatsApp went out from my phone, I take responsibility for it. It was a private message.”