A video showed footballer Kurt Zouma brutally kicking his cat. Now the Frenchman has been sentenced to social work and a fine. His club still sticks by him.

The case not only shocked the football world: In February, a video appeared on the Internet that showed football professional Kurt Zouma brutally abusing his cat. The Frenchman kept picking the cat up, dropping it and kicking it. The pictures also showed how the footballer of the English Premier League club West Ham United hit the animal and threw shoes at him.

The animal welfare organization Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) had filed a lawsuit against Zouma for animal cruelty, and he has now been convicted by a court in London. The 27-year-old has to do 180 hours of social work. He is also banned from owning cats for five years and has to pay a fine of around £9,000 – the equivalent of around €10,500. Zouma had pleaded guilty in court.

Kurt Zouma kicked his cat like a football

In her verdict, the judge pointed out that the French international was a role model: “You have to be aware that others look up to you and that many young people strive to emulate you.” The cat was dependent on Zouma, he had to take care of her.

Even before the British judiciary found guilty, his mistreatment had had consequences. Zouma was fined €300,000 by his club West Ham United immediately after the incident became known. According to the club, the sum was donated to several national and international animal welfare organizations. Sponsor Adidas separated from the athlete. He was also not called up for the French national team.

West Ham United hold on to Zouma

However, Zouma was allowed to continue playing for West Ham, despite criticism from some fans and pundits. Zouma was also on the pitch for 90 minutes in both games in the Europa League semifinals against Eintracht Frankfurt. After the verdict, the club campaigned to give Zouma a chance to “learn from his mistakes”.

Zouma’s younger brother, Yoan Zouma, who recorded the video and posted it online, was also sentenced to 140 hours of community service and also banned from owning cats for five years. The video could be heard how the 24-year-old, who played for fifth division club Dagenham

Those: “Guardian”