Colombia’s ambassador to the United Kingdom isn’t happy with The Sun (which, well, isn’t exactly an uncommon feeling), and it’s all because of a headline that he felt was too on the nose.
Prior to England’s Round of 16 clash with Colombia on Tuesday, The Sun’s front page featured a picture of Harry Kane with the headline “GO KANE!”, which the ambassador felt was a jab at Colombia’s ties to cocaine.
The Guardian initially reported on the ambassador’s ire.
“It’s rather sad that they use such a festive and friendly environment as the World Cup to target a country and continue to stigmatise it with a completely unrelated issue,” said the ambassador, Néstor Osorio Londoño, who is hosting a party for Colombian fans in a traditional English pub on Tuesday.
“Respect, fair play and joy for the game is all that matters tonight. We’ll be cheering for Colombia and hoping we can all enjoy a great match.”
The Sun didn’t apologize (which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone), and instead said that they hoped the front page would help Colombia’s coffee industry.
A spokesperson for the newspaper said: “Like the ambassador, we’re looking forward to a good game tonight against a great footballing nation.”
They said the front page was “suitably light-hearted considering the context” and said they hoped it would boost the Colombian coffee industry.
On one hand, it’s The Sun and stuff like this is expected. Hell, I’m surprised they didn’t devote their front page on Tuesday to why Raheem Sterling should have been benched for the Colombia match and left in Russia. On the other hand, Colombians are still probably quite sensitive about tying cocaine with soccer, especially after the murder of Andres Escobar 24 years ago and its links to a cartel.