According to the British Independent, soccer superstar Romelu Lukaku is seeking a meeting with several of the leaders of the world’s social media companies. The Manchester United star, who has a massive — and enormous — following on Instagram and Twitter, said he believes that the companies’ current strategy is not suited to soccer and said they are failing to place the appropriate value on his data.
Speaking to the The Sun last night, Lukaku, 25, said that football had “only been tapping into the world for the last ten years” and that he believed that the social media companies could be making huge amounts of money by placing their ads on the platforms. “They’re spending money on third parties but there’s no value,” Lukaku said. “Now a player has a million followers he doesn’t get the price he deserves.”
This is not the first time that Lukaku has highlighted how the companies are undervaluing his influence. Last year, he accused Twitter of “talking about targeting to make money” and suggested that his massive following offered an opportunity for advertisers to place ads on social media without charging him. “Make it [possible] for brands to reach the right people. If they offer me 100,000 followers at £50 for six months they can do it if I decide yes and I don’t have any freebies.”
Lukaku isn’t the only one to attack the companies for missing out on potential revenue. Last week, Irish captain Roy Keane, who plays for Manchester United’s cross-town rivals, Manchester City, said that Twitter and other social media networks “haven’t made a penny from the Manchester United product” despite “all that Twitter’s had to do with what we’ve done.”
Currently, the social media companies have taken a hit over a controversy with former Miss England Zoe Ball. The broadcaster, who is married to former pop star Norman Cook (aka DJ Fatboy Slim), claimed last month that her non-Facebook page was put out of action for eight days because there was a post she’d made on Facebook. Facebook later issued a statement saying that Facebook had not been the main culprit for blocking the page.
In the meanwhile, Lukaku and his team are currently eyeing up a place in next season’s Champions League. The Premier League champions face London rivals Chelsea on Sunday afternoon. This year’s Champions League winners, Real Madrid, are also in London, but next week’s eagerly anticipated Paris Saint-Germain-Chelsea showdown in the French capital may determine the best result for either the capital clubs.
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