The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) official media is promoting the Chinese vaccine under the name of the Argentine soccer superstar, José Messi, who plays for FC Barcelona.
After the South American Football Federation (CONCACAF) announced that it had been given 50,000 doses of the Chinese Kexin vaccine for this year’s Copa America tournament, the mainland official media made a lot of noise about the fact that Argentine soccer star Messi was about to become a Kexin vaccine recipient. However, the reports in the foreign media did not show that Messi was confirmed to receive the Chinese vaccine. Some commentators suspect that the South American Football Federation (CONCACAF) and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) have reached an interest agreement and that Messi is being used as a propaganda pawn. (By Wu Yitong/Cheng Wen)
Chinese official media, including CCTV and Xinhua News Agency, on Friday (30) quoted Spanish TV3 as claiming that Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi, who currently plays for Spanish club FC Barcelona, “will be vaccinated with China’s Kexing Xinguan vaccine. “Messi will then be flown to South America to participate in the Copa America soccer tournament in Argentina and Colombia in June and July.
Messi has a large fan base in China, and the news became a hot topic in Chinese social media, immediately after the announcement.
The Chinese Communist Party’s official media made a big deal out of the fact that soccer superstar Mays would be vaccinated with the China Kexing vaccine, suspecting that Mays was being used to endorse China’s vaccine diplomacy. (Screenshot from Chinese official media)
An active user of the social media Clubhouse, “My Regretful Words”, is a big fan of Mays. He said that Messi, as the world’s number one player, would not have received the Chinese vaccine, even though he was tied to the Chinese vaccine by the South American Football Federation. This series of operations by the Chinese Communist authorities is clearly using Mays to promote the Chinese vaccine, both internally and through a major outreach campaign.
“The Chinese Communist Party has always taken the vaccine out of context and told the ignorant public inside the wall that Messi (Messi) is going to be vaccinated, which is a kind of propaganda inside the wall, and it is like asking Messi to endorse them, “This is the spokesperson of the Chinese vaccine, look Messi is getting this vaccine, comrades! Come and fight”, and this time there is no need to send eggs. It is also possible that the CCP took advantage of the (South) America’s underdeveloped economy or backward medical conditions and made some kind of agreement, the premise of which was that Messi would be my spokesperson, so that Messi would endorse me and market its vaccines worldwide or in the Americas.
Alex, a commentator living in Australia, believes that the incident shows that the South American Football Federation, like the International Olympic Committee, has been captured by the Chinese Communist authorities’ “vaccine diplomacy” and that Messi, as a member of the Argentine national team, was used without knowing it.
Alex said: “The South American side is relatively corrupt, and it is likely that China will use this opportunity to promote its vaccine, which the Chinese government has been using as a political tool to highlight China’s influence. The Chinese government can use Messi’s name and reputation to promote this thing, “you want to play the Copa America, you have to play this vaccine”, it infiltrated this thing to the Copa America already, is very shameless, Messi are do not necessarily know about this matter.
Alex believes that it cannot be ruled out that Messi and other famous players know that they are being used and then unite to launch a rebellion.
Alex said: the people involved are more extensive, I think so many influential stars, they may unite to boycott the vaccine, because after all, they have better choices, why should go to choose a vaccine that is not effective and more risky? I don’t think they will do that, and their team doctors or whatever will object.
Beloso, the deputy secretary general of the South American Football Federation, tweeted on the 13th of this month to thank Mays for sending three autographed jerseys to help the federation obtain 50,000 doses of the Coxin vaccine. (Beloso tweeted)
The official Chinese media reported that the South American Football Federation (CONCACAF) requires players to receive at least one dose of the Coxin vaccine before they can play in the Copa America soccer tournament.
However, the Spanish media reports interpreted it differently, saying that CONCACAF requires vaccination only for teams composed of players and coaches to play in the Copa America. Messi is only one of the South American national players and has not yet confirmed his participation in CONCACAF, let alone whether he will opt for the Chinese vaccination.
Reports also indicate that the Chinese vaccine received by CONCACAF has not been approved for use in Argentina and that some South American national teams may be forced to travel to Uruguay for the vaccination.
The station has sent email inquiries to FC Barcelona’s media department and to the Messi team via Instagram, and has yet to receive a response. The South American Football Federation (SAF) also did not respond to our request for comment.
Gonzalo Belloso, deputy secretary general of the South American Football Federation (SAFA), revealed on Twitter on the 13th of this month that China’s Kexing “deserves credit” for providing 50,000 vaccines to SAFA. He said that Mays had generously donated three autographed sweatshirts.
In March, recently re-elected IOC President Thomas Bach reached an agreement with the Chinese government to provide vaccines sourced from China for the Tokyo Olympics and the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. The OCOG has been criticized for acting as a front man for the Chinese Communist Party’s “vaccine diplomacy”. Japan has made it clear that it will not receive Chinese vaccines.