English Premiership

Liverpool's Reina in race row

2012-03-01 18:16
Pepe Reina (File)

London - Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina on Thursday faced accusations of racism over a television commercial in his native Spain but the insurance company which made the advert denied it was offensive.

The allegations come after Liverpool were widely criticised for their reaction to the eight-match ban handed to Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez for racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra.

Reina came under fire from anti-racism campaigners Operation Black Vote (OBV) over the advertisement for the Spanish division of Groupama, showing the player in a jungle being greeted by a spear-carrying tribe and their chief.

With the goalkeeper's name translated as "queen" in Spanish, the chief appears to suggest a sexual relationship with him by saying "You queen, me king" to which Reina raises his eyebrows and sarcastically replies: "I feel safe, la la la."

OBV director Simon Woolley said: "I'm shocked on so many levels.

"Firstly, how would the Spanish feel if the English stereotyped Spanish people as backward, stupid, and animalistic homosexuals?

"Secondly, what does this say about Pepe Reina?

"The Liverpool goalkeeper has lived and worked in the UK for nearly a decade, does he think it's okay to characterise black people this way?

"Does he think his black team-mates will laugh at his joke?"

A spokesperson for the Spanish division of Groupama said it had only received one complaint over the commercial and denied it had been taken off air in response.

"We received complaints from just one association, which is based in England," the spokesperson said.

"We have not received any other similar comments from anywhere. We have received messages that liked the ad, including some asking for it to be dubbed into English.

"The Spanish division of Groupama does not consider that it has any type of offensive content.

"It is a humorous line that we have been developing for two campaigns, including with other goalkeepers such as (Iker) Casillas.

"There was no intention to hurt anyone's feelings.

"The advert is no longer on television but not because we pulled it but rather because the campaign was planned for February 2-29 and it has already ended."

Liverpool - who won their first trophy for six years when they lifted the League Cup on Sunday - were not immediately available for comment but the club was reported to be unaware of Reina's involvement in the commercial.

Read more on:    epl  |  pepe reina
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
5 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Sport Talk

Fixtures
30 September 2016
Everton v Crystal Palace, Goodison Park 21:00
01 October 2016
Swansea City v Liverpool, Liberty Stadium 13:30
West Ham United v Middlesbrough, Olympic Stadium 16:00
Sunderland v West Bromwich Albion, Stadium of Light 16:00
Hull City v Chelsea, The KC Stadium 16:00
Watford v Bournemouth, Vicarage Road 16:00
02 October 2016
Manchester United v Stoke City, Old Trafford 13:00
Leicester City v Southampton, King Power Stadium 15:15
Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester City, White Hart Lane 15:15
Burnley v Arsenal, Turf Moor 17:30
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Will Jose Mourinho lead Manchester United to the English Premiership title in 2016/17?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

Big month in the world of golf as the FedEx Cup concludes on the PGA Tour, the Race to Dubai gathers steam on the European Tour and the Sunshine Tour offers local golfers the chance to bank some cash. Oh, and not forgetting the USA v Europe Ryder Cup showdown at Hazeltine!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.