Sometimes, the best thing to do is say nothing. But those who run things at Juventus must not have thought of that on Thursday.
In the wake of re-surfacing rape allegations against current Juve star Cristiano Ronaldo, the Italian club decided it’d be a good idea to issue a statement. And hey, sometimes that is a good idea. After all, they could’ve said something about the victim. They could’ve even given the bland, milquetoast ‘we take these allegations very seriously’ line. But what they decided on instead was just about the worst possible option they could’ve chosen.
“Cristiano Ronaldo has shown in recent months his great professionalism and dedication, which is appreciated by everyone at Juventus,” the club would start on Twitter.
This is already a bad start, of course. There’s almost no coming back from it. But dang it, they just couldn’t help themselves. Instead, they went on to make it worse. Somehow.
“The events allegedly dating back to almost 10 years ago do not change this opinion, which is shared by anyone who has come into contact with this great champion.”
So there you have it, athletes. As long as you’re good at the sport you play, you can be a terrible person while not playing. It’s apparently that simple. As we know, Ronaldo “firmly” denies the allegations. Meanwhile, Nike tells AP that they are deeply concerned by the “disturbing allegations and will continue to closely monitor the situation.”
Again, Juventus didn’t have to say anything. Now, going that route is typically bad too. Especially when we’re talking about something as serious as rape allegations. But saying that instead? It’s a whole lot of yikes. It’s a bad message on a very basic level. And an incredibly dangerous one to buy into.
Just because someone is good at sports doesn’t make them untouchable.