- Footballer Ada Hegerberg was asked if she could twerk when she picked up world soccer’s greatest individual prize.
- She said no, and was laughed off stage by presenter Martin Solveig, who asked the question.
- The incident provoked outrage across the soccer industry.
- But Hegerberg says she does not consider the incident to be “sexual harassment.”
- She said she was simply happy to make history by becoming the first woman to win the prize.
The sports world may be furious about Monday night’s events, but Norwegian footballer Ada Hegerberg says she doesn’t think being asked to twerk after receiving her Ballon d’Or trophy was “sexual harassment.”
Hegerberg became the inaugural Women’s Ballon d’Or winner at a glitzy awards ceremony on Monday.
Shortly after receiving her trophy, she was asked if she could twerk by presenter DJ Martin Solveig. When she said “no,” he laughed her off stage.
The incident left 2018 FIFA World Cup winner Kylian Mbappé visibly gobsmacked and provoked outrage across the soccer industry.
Sports Illustrated journalist Grant Wahl said Martin Solveig’s twerk question was “absolute trash.”
The United States women’s national team midfielder Lindsey Horan was also critical of Solveig, and tweeted: “This is an absolute joke. Unbelievable. She just won the first ever Ballon d’Or for women.”
Horan then congratulated Hegerberg, and added: “You do not want this bs.”
Footage of the incident was posted on Twitter:
Lyon striker Ada Hegerberg, first female Ballon D'Or winner after scoring over 250 career goals at the age 23, asked to twerk on stage in front of footballing giants and the public watching. Disgusting and really ruined her moment she deserved. Poor. pic.twitter.com/FSz0ozz2T4
— Sean (@SeanWalkerSport) December 3, 2018
Hegerberg herself has since said that Solveig approached her after the ceremony to apologise, adding that she was happy to make history by becoming the first ever women’s Ballon d’Or champion – the first woman to be recognised by France Football as the best on the planet.
“He came to me afterwards and was really sad that it went that way,” she said, according to the soccer website Goal.com. “I didn’t really consider it a sexual harassment or anything in the moment.”
Hegerberg then said she was “just happy” to have won the Ballon d’Or “to be honest.”
Hegerberg also posted this photograph to her social media followers on Twitter:
WHAT A NIGHT ⭐️ Photo: Ivar Waage Johansen pic.twitter.com/bDfbUuAYrI
— Ada S Hegerberg (@AdaStolsmo) December 4, 2018
Hegerberg plays as a striker for Olympique Lyonnais and scored an astonishing 42 goals in 25 games in all competitions for the French team in the 2017-2018 season.
Her exploits in the attack helped the Lyon team win the Division 1 championship and the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
Hegerberg and Lyon are next in action in a Division 1 match against Soyaux-Charente on Saturday, December 8.