Hiring Reginald D Hunter was 'huge mistake' says chairman Clarke Carlisle as colourful language leaves crowd stunned

Hunter, a black comedian from Georgia in the United States, repeatedly used the word 'n*****' during his performance

The hiring of the comedian Reginald D Hunter to perform at English football’s gala awards dinner has been branded a “huge mistake” after the American performer sprinkled his set with liberal use of the word “n*****”.

Hunter, a long-term British resident and regular on Have I Got News For You, began his act at the Professional Footballers’ Association awards on Sunday night by explaining that he used the word “n*****” frequently in his set.

After admitting he knew very little about football, he went on to use the word to refer to the Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, triggering a huge intake of collective breath.

Suarez was ruled by the Football Association to have racially abused the black Manchester United defender Patrice Evra during a Premier League match in October 2011 and subsequently banned for eight matches and fined £40,000.

As the world of football and beyond rounded on the PFA for booking Hunter, the Georgia-born comedian remained silent on the subject on Monday.

He was said by The Independent’s Sam Wallace, who attended  the event at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London’s Mayfair, to be the “on the edge… the right man albeit at the wrong event at the wrong time”.

On Monday Lord Ouseley, the chairman of Kick It Out, the anti-racism in football campaign, demanded an explanation over the booking of Hunter. “I’m surprised there wasn’t a mass walkout,” he said. “It almost begs the question why does Kick It Out bother?”

PFA chairman Clarke Carlisle said he thought the organisation had made a mistake hiring Hunter but refused to criticise the content of his set at the awards ceremony. He said Hunter’s comments would be acceptable at a comedy club – where “moral compasses” were left at the door – but not at the gala awards ceremony.

“I thought we made a huge mistake,” Mr Carlisle said. “I thought with everything that we have gone through over the last few years, using a comedian of his type was a bad error in judgement.

“I was embarrassed sat up there throughout and I want to apologise unreservedly to the footballing community that was present.”

But the PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor attempted to play down the furore. Asked whether the booking had been an error, Mr Taylor answered: “No, no, don’t be silly.” He added: “I think there were a few raised eyebrows over the comedian but that is the sort of thing you can’t control. It was unfortunate.”

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most