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Konami part ways with Griezmann

Antoine Griezmann loses high-profile sponsorship deal after video backlash

July 7, 2021 By Michelle Bonsu
The backlash against the French star has now begun, as he's lost a high profile contract with Japanese company Komani following the release of a "controversial" video.

Unfortunately, if Antoine Griezmann thought that the uproar following his gaffe on a recently released video would just die down, that doesn't appear to be happening anytime soon.

The French star, who was part of France's 2018 World Cup winning squad, continues to find himself in hot water after a leaked video featuring him and teammate Ousmane Dembele hit the airwaves. In it, the duo, who play their club football for Barcelona, were seen laughing and mocking a group of Japanese technicians who had come to fix a TV in their hotel room while the Blaugrana were in Japan in 2019.

Griezmann has since issued a groveling apology, including a personal one to Hiroshi Mikitani, the CEO of Rakuten, who are one of Barcelona's chief sponsors.

Yet despite apologizing and being quick to point out that he didn't mean to offend, it doesn't seem to be enough. Although Griezmann doesn't appear to have actually spoken in the video, he did laugh when Dembele made rude comments about the workers' appearance. The former Borussia Dortmund player was recorded as saying "All these ugly faces, just so you can play PES, aren't you ashamed?"

Today, according to reports, Japanese entertainment company Konami, another major sponsor of Barcelona, have decided to cancel their contract with Griezmann. The player had initially been appointed as an ambassador for Yu-Gi-Oh!, a cartoon series and video game produced by Konami, but in light of these recent developments - and certainly pressure from people on social media - they've decided to nullify their agreement.


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