Monday 26 February 2018

Barcelona player sacked on same day he joined club after discovery of offensive tweets

24-year-old Guardiola had his contract terminated after offensive Twitter messages appeared on his account in October 2013

Jack De Menzes

Barcelona have sacked a player after he sent offensive tweets about Catalonia, just hours after announcing his signing.

Sergi Guardiola, no relation to former player and manager Pep Guardiola, was unveiled by the La Liga club on Monday after securing a dream move from Alcoron, but his contract was terminated with immediate effect the same day after it was discovered that Twitter messages sent from his account over two years ago were offensive to Barcelona and Catalonia.

The 24-year-old spoke to Spanish radio station Cope to claim that a friend was behind the messages, and to apologise for any offence that was taken by his tweets which he says he was not aware had been posted.

One tweet, which was dated from October 2013, said: “Hala Madrid, p*** cataluna”, which translated to Guardiola calling another user a Catalonian wh***.

“I know I made a mistake,” said Guardiola. “I apologise to Catalonia and Barcelona. I understand the decision, I'd do the same.

“I want to make clear I didn't write those tweets. A friend took my phone and did it.

“It's a misunderstanding. The tweets are from 2013, a joke from a friend, I didn't even know the tweets existed.

“Barcelona have treated me very well. I understand their decision. Now I'm going home, we'll see what happens.

“Once you're a professional, you support the team that plays best, and that's Barcelona. Joining them was a dream, now it's broken.

“I'm from Mallorca. I'm not anti-Catalan or anti-anything. I couldn't write those tweets.”

Surprisingly, Guardiola is not the first player in Spain to see his dream move collapse due to previous Twitter messages, with Julio Rey having his contract with Deportino La Coruna after posting a Twitter message in 2012 that read “F*** Deport, f*** Riazor”

(© Independent News Service)

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