Should junk food advertising be banned from sport?
Today, Christiano Ronaldo is emerging as the star player of this year’s Euros. But it is his actions of the pitch that are making headlines.
The Portugal captain inadvertently caused a worldwide stir for turning his nose up at the popular soft drink in front of the media. Cristiano Ronaldo’s disdain for Coca-Cola has been one of the major talking points of Euro 2020.
But why did his actions cause so much controversy?
Ronaldo has once again been one of the star attractions at the European Championship, scoring three goals in Portugal’s first two group matches to put them within sight of a place in the round of 16.
However, the Juventus superstar’s exploits on the pitch have been overshadowed by a now-infamous show of contempt towards one of the world’s most popular brands in front of the media.
What was the Cristiano Ronaldo – Coca-Cola incident?
Ronaldo sat down for his first pre-match press conference of the tournament before Portugal’s clash with Hungary, and noticed that two bottles of Coca-Cola were sitting directly in front of him.
The 36-year-old promptly removed the soft drinks from the view of the cameras and replaced them with a water bottle, rolling his eyes while muttering with an undertone of disgust “Coca-Cola”.
Ronaldo held up his water bottle before setting it down and said ‘Agua’ – the Portuguese term for water – in an apparent attempt to urge people to drink water instead of Coca-Cola.
Was this inspiring?
Other players have tried to make light of the situation, including Ukraine’s Andriy Yarmolenko, who made sure that both the Coca-Cola and Heineken bottles were in front of him after a win against North Macedonia and jokingly asked the brands to contact him.
How did Coca-Cola react to Cristiano Ronaldo?
Coca-Cola’s market value plummeted by £2.8 billion after Ronaldo’s antics, but the company has since released a statement insisting that “everyone is entitled to their drink preferences”.
How have other brands reacted to Ronaldo vs Coca-Cola?
Elsewhere, one of Europe’s leading furniture retail companies, IKEA, has attempted to profit from the situation by releasing a new reusable water bottle under the name ‘Cristiano’.
Major water brands have also jumped on the bandwagon, including Evian, who shared the video of Ronaldo removing the Coca-Cola bottles via Twitter with the caption: “Couldn’t have said it better ourselves! #stayhydrated #drinktrue #CR7”.
Even the World Health Organisation (WHO) seized an opportunity for self-promotion, posting a link on social media to one of their articles highlighting the potential health benefits of cutting out sugar from your diet.