Super Bowl's only Muslim player keeps quiet over travel ban

Mohamed Sanu is expected to star for the Atlanta Falcons this weekend

BY Daniel Kelly 11:55 Tuesday 31 January 2017, 11:55 31 Jan 2017

Picture by John Bazemore AP/Press Association Images

Mohamed Sanu may become one of the biggest talking points ahead of Super Bowl LI.

The Atlanta Falcons wide-receiver is the only Muslim player on the roster of either the Falcons or New England Patriots that will play this weekend. The 27-year-old will be one of Atlanta's main offensive threats in Sunday's match.

Born in New Jersey, and the son of two Sierra Leonean-born parents, Sanu lived there for a brief period as a child. The west African country is not one of the ones named in Donald Trump's list of seven countries that have had travel restrictions placed on them in recent weeks. 

On the opening night of Super Bowl week, Sanu was speaking at Monday's media event, and claimed he was unwilling to speak about Trump, yet.

When asked about his religious beliefs, Sanu politely said he only wanted to speak about football. He plays in his first Super Bowl on Sunday.

"I’m here to talk about football. I respect all you guys, I have tremendous love for all you guys, but I'm here to talk about football."

"It’s a very tough situation," Sanu told the assembled press. "I just pray that the country and the world can be united. It’s really hard for me to talk about this right now. I just want to focus on the game and talk about football."

In the week of the biggest game of Sanu's career, the questions will keep coming in the coming days, but he hinted at the fact, he may speak out after the game. "I have some feelings but I'm not really going to talk about it now,", he added.

In what is a tradition before each Super Bowl, the American president will make their pre-match prediction, with Trump likely to pick the Patriots. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick are both known as fans of the 45th President.

If Atlanta were to win the match, they would be the first sports team welcomed to The White House under the Trump regime. That visit, may put Sanu further under the spotlight.

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