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SBD Global/January 21, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

Fan Video Of Messi Drinking Coca-Cola At Restaurant Could Cost Player Pepsi Deal

A video circulating on the Internet "could cause Lionel Messi to be sanctioned by Pepsi," according to EL COLOMBIANO. The video shows Messi and his wife, Antonella Roccuzzo, at a restaurant drinking Coca-Cola. Messi is sponsored by Pepsi. If the four-time Ballon d'Or winner's contract with the company has a clause stating he can not drink Coca-Cola in public, "he could lose the sponsorship." A similar case occured last year when Brazilian footballer Ronaldinho lost his $750,000-a-year sponsorship with Coca-Cola after "being seen with a Pepsi can" (EL COLOMBIANO, 1/18). ECODIARIO noted the video "was apparently not taken with any bad intentions" by a fan giving the jersey of his club team, Brazil's Vitória, as a gift to the player. Pepsi could decide to end its multi-million Euro sponsorship with the player "due to the bad image of the player consuming in his private life the product of the brand's most important rival and competitor" (ECODIARIO, 1/19).
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