When football PR stunts backfire: Pie-eating goalie, Bendtner's boxers and more
Mohamed Salah raised more than a few quizzical eyebrows when the Liverpool star decided to deactivate all of his social media accounts earlier this month.
The Egypt international departed with one final cryptic message in which he told his followers he felt it was "time to get in touch, for real."
2019 Resolution: Time to get in touch, for real.— Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah) January 22, 2019
Several days of confusion and speculation passed before it became apparent the move was all part of a promotional campaign for DHL.
Getting in touch, for real... 😃 pic.twitter.com/zTRnXfGI8B— Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah) January 27, 2019
The stunt was no doubt a promotional boost for the global courier service, and overall it seemed to go down well with fans of Salah who were broadly happy just to have him back on social media rather than harbouring any feelings that they had been duped.
However, there have been plenty of occasions when a football star or club has taken part in a PR stunt, only for it to strike the wrong chord or backfire spectacularly.