Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann has apologised after he tweeted a picture of himself dressed as a black basketball player.
The French footballer was accused of racism for his ‘blackface’ make-up, an act associated with 19th century racial stereotypes.
In a Twitter post on Sunday, he said he was at a 1980s party and was trying to pay “tribute” to the Harlem Globetrotters team.
“Calm down guys, I’m a fan of the Harlem Globetrotters and their good old days… it’s a tribute,” Griezmann wrote, after receiving angry comments from fans.
Shortly after, he added: “I recognise it is clumsy on my part. If I have hurt anyone, I apologise.”
He then deleted the image from Twitter and Instagram.
Griezmann was voted the third best player in the world last year and there were rumours of a move to Manchester United.
Some United fans on Twitter have now been urging him to stay away from the club.
Piers Morgan also weighed in, writing: “And Overseas Racially Insensitive Imbecile of the Year goes to.”
Griezmann is the second person this week to be publicly shamed for using a ‘blackface’ costume.
Over the weekend, Star Sports Bookmakers had to apologise after being accused of racism for posting a picture of a man mocking Labour politician Diane Abbott.
The tweet, which has since been deleted, was posted on Friday night and showed a man with his face covered in dark make-up at a darts competition holding up a sign reading 190.
The sign was a reference to the shadow home secretary’s blunder with policing numbers in a radio interview during the general election campaign.
The maximum score with three darts is 180.