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Marca Issue Apology After Spurs Left "Astonished" By Claim Regarding Jewish Origins

Marca Issue Apology After Spurs Left "Astonished" By Claim Regarding Jewish Origins
By Mikey Traynor
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An article published by one of the lead football writers for Marca - Spain's best-selling daily newspaper - has provoked an angry response from Tottenham Hotspur in the build-up to their Champions League clash with Real Madrid this week.

While previewing Los Blanco's upcoming opponents, senior reporter Enrique Ortega claimed that Spurs are hated in England because of the Jewish origins of the club, and has since published an apology.

Ortega initially wrote:

Their Jewish origin has made them into a club disliked by rival fans...but in their 135 years of existence they have always had style and great players.


After being informed of what was published, Tottenham Hotspur issued a response [via ESPN], outlining that they were astonished that a 'distasteful' claim made it to print.

We are astonished that a publication such as Marca, which presents itself as an alleged source of professional journalism, has seen fit to publish such an article which is blatantly wrong and wholly distasteful.

Marca, and Ortega, have since offered an apology, claiming that the article was positive and complimentary in nature and that the controversy that has been generated is down to issues with translation from Spanish to English.


The article published today in Marca about the history of Tottenham, Real Madrid's next rival, aimed to give a general brushstroke of Spurs, a club with enormous tradition in British football and across all the continent 'always praised for its good footballing taste.'

The fame of the team, their 'permanent selection during their 135 years of quality players', their records, ambition to outdo themselves... all these ideas were within an article which, nonetheless, has generated controversy in England for a mistranslation of the word 'odiado,' which is used in the text.

This 'hate' which Tottenham suffers is very focused on radical and racist groups who hide themselves within the fan-bases of, especially, Chelsea and West Ham. Obviously, these groups do not in any way represent the fans or English society.

I regret the confusion which has been created in this respect. The intention was not to harm the image of Tottenham, a club we respect, value and admire -- without going any further one of their players was on our cover today -- and we would never want to act as a loudspeaker for these racist minorities, of which football has too many, and who use any pretext to spread their messages of hate, which we reject completely.

Chelsea and West Ham will surely be delighted with the shout-out there. In the print edition of the paper it is clear that the line on Tottenham being hated around England is a main focus in the story.

Tottenham face Real Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday evening.


[via ESPN]

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