Sorry Alli says virus video 'wasn't funny'

Dele Alli received backlash for his video about the coronavirus outbreak.
Dele Alli received backlash for his video about the coronavirus outbreak.

LONDON • Dele Alli has apologised for a video posted on his Snapchat account in which the Tottenham and England midfielder appeared to mock an Asian man and joke about the coronavirus outbreak.

Alli, who has been on holiday during his club's winter break, posted the video of him wearing a face mask in an airport departure lounge on Saturday with the message: "Corona whattt, please listen with volume."

The 23-year-old then turns the camera towards an unsuspecting man of Asian appearance before panning to a bottle of antiseptic handwash captioned: "This virus gunna have to be quicker than that to catch me."

The video was subsequently deleted after complaints were made, with Alli issuing a statement on Sunday in which he admitted he had "let myself down and the club".

"I'd like to apologise for the video I posted on Snapchat yesterday," he said in a video released on the Chinese social media platform Weibo.

"It wasn't funny. I realised that immediately and took it down. I let myself down and the club. I don't want you guys to have that impression of me.

"It isn't something that should be joked about. Sending all my love and thoughts and prayers for everyone in China."

The virus outbreak which originated from Wuhan has killed over 900 people, with more than 40,000 infected.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 11, 2020, with the headline 'Sorry Alli says virus video 'wasn't funny''. Print Edition | Subscribe