West Ham drop transfer interest in player after Twitter reaction
West Ham (As reported in The Huffington Post) appear to have cancelled the proposed transfer of Gent striker Ilombe Mboyo after fans on Twitter deemed the move to be the wrong direction for the club. Mboyo was convicted of served three years in prison for his involvement in a gang rape of a 14 year old girl when he was 16.
The Belgium international, originally born in the DR Congo, had seem to be moving to make a move for the player after his goal scoring exploits for Belgian side Gent last season.
However, after a tweet from West Ham co-owner David Sullivan’s son – Jack Sullivan – the club were urged by fans not to sign the player due to his criminal record.
How would you feel if we signed Mboyo of Gent ? Terrible crime when he was 16, can he ever be forgiven ? What do you think ?
— Jack Sullivan (@jsullivanwhu) August 4, 2013
Sullivan’s son received largely negative feedback to the tweet with one fan tweeting “Mboyo would kill my club for me” and prompted Sullivan to send a second tweet informing fans “99% of you have said no to MBOYO. I’ll pass it onto my Dad. I’m sure we won’t sign him. We respect your views.”
However, for other Hammers fans, some viewed the whole exchange with great embarrassment and felt the Twitter conversation was unprofessional and crass. This does beg the question – was this a good idea to help improve transparency at the club using Social Media, or rather does it appear that major transfer deals are being influenced by the owners son over Twitter?
Either way, this was an interesting exchange and certainly the first time we’ve seen fans crowd-sourced for opinion on a controversial transfer.