Barcelona deny hiring firm to attack Lionel Messi on social media
Barcelona have denied hiring a firm to produce disparaging social media posts aimed at its own players such as Lionel Messi and Gerard Pique.
A radio station claim Barcelona wanted to protect the reputation of president Josep Maria Bartomeu and damage the image of those who disagreed with him.
SER Catalunya said the club worked with a company “that creates opinion” on social media accounts to achieve that.
But Barcelona say they “roundly deny any relationship” with the accounts.
“The club demands an immediate rectification of the information published and reserves the right to exercise legal action against those who continue to implicate the club in such practices,” a statement added.
According to a podcast show on SER Catalunya the company, I3 Ventures, manage “dozens of accounts on Twitter and Facebook”.
It says through these accounts attacks were made on Messi, Pique, former manager Pep Guardiola, ex-players Xavi and Carles Puyol and some of Bartomeu's presidential rivals.
The podcast claims Barcelona found the posts “necessary to preserve the reputation of the president and the brand”.
In response, Barcelona say I3 Ventures is a service provider to the club but “has no relationship with the accounts mentioned and, if any relationship were to come to light, the club would immediately end their contractual agreement and bring about any necessary legal action to defend their interests”.
It added: “As such, FC Barcelona confirm it has services contracted relating to the monitoring of social media with the aim of analysing both positive and negative messages about the organisation itself.”
Barcelona says the “protection of this reputation is a fundamental element and responsibility for those who work for the organisation”.
Chelsea 3 Southampton 3 EPL Match Report 17/10/2020
2020-21 English Premier League match report – Stamford Bridge – Saturday, October 17, 2020 Chelsea…
Manchester City 1 Arsenal 0 Match Report EPL 17/10/2020
2020-21 English Premier League match report – Etihad stadium – Saturday, October 17, 2020 Manchester…
Leeds Utd 0 Wolverhampton 1; Jimenez Goal hands Wolves win
2020-21 English Premier League match report – Bramall Lane – Monday, October 19, 2020 Leeds…
PSG 1 Manchester United 2
UEFA Champions’ League Group H – Parc des Princes – Tuesday, 20th October 2020 Paris…
Dynamo Kiev 0 Juventus 2
UEFA Champions’ League Group G – Kiev Olympic Stadium – Tuesday, 20th October 2020 Dynamo…
Real Madrid 2 Shakhtar Donetsk 3 Match Report 21/10/2020
UEFA Champions’ League Group B – Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano – Wednesday, 21st October 2020…