Premier League stars have leapt to the defence of Manchester United star Adnan Januzaj after he was castigated by The Sun for taking a girl on a date to Nando’s while wearing a tracksuit.
Under the headline, ‘My cheap date at Adnando’s’, the newspaper carries an interview with Melissa McKenzie, who claims she was ‘treated’ to an £18 meal at a Nando’s diner – only after she paid £5 for parking.
McKenzie also details how the pair watched X-Factor together in a three-star hotel before the 18-year-old playmaker, who has been one of United’s best players this season and is reportedly paid £30,000 per week, had to return home at 9pm.
Januzaj was also criticised for wearing jogging bottoms and red trainers while his apparent unwillingness to splash out on the alleged date saw him teased by the paper.
“I’ve never met anyone so stingy in my life,” she told The Sun. “I was so excited for the date. We met on a social network site and I got all dressed up and even got my make-up done – costing me £30.
“I expected him to come to me in a flashy car but I ended up driving him about in my old blue Fiesta and I was left to pay and display. Then he said he was taking me to Nando’s – my face fell.”
The restaurant have quickly capitalised on the social media buzz generated by the story by offering Januzaj a gift card with £50 on it, as well as advising him to dress a bit smarter next time
Unfortunately for the youngster, who is being courted by the English national team, it appears he has become the butt of jokes left, right and centre, but Januzaj has at least garnered some support from other Premier League footballers.
Crystal Palace winger Jason Puncheon went on Instagram to post a picture of the article in question, writing: “januzaj keeping it real…got time for this guy…what makes these people think he has to spend big cos he’s got it!!”
Tottenham star Andros Townsend also saw fit to back his fellow professional in memorable fashion on Twitter.
Nandos was too classy for her! I would of bought her a freddo and sent her packing!! pic.twitter.com/x0sjWmJAdp
— andros townsend (@andros_townsend) January 27, 2014
These girls make me sick!! How this stuff gets in the paper I’ll never know! pic.twitter.com/mFU9jiYPpr — andros townsend (@andros_townsend) January 27, 2014
Januzaj’s Manchester United team-mate Rio Ferdinand also weighed in with this ‘hilarious’ continuation of the meme on Instagram:
And Norwich midfielder Bradley Johnson also weighed in on Monday afternoon.
Sums up what type of girl she is, to go to papers an sell a story!! She deserves a Dixy 99p chicken an chips for that!! #golddigger
— Bradley Johnson (@Bradley4Johnson) January 27, 2014
To be honest, Early Doors thinks Januzaj came out of the article rather well.
It is far from the first time that a footballer has attempted to simply take a girl out on a date but ended up being left humiliated.
With Melissa running straight to the newspaper to expose Januzaj, sympathy is coming his way from the general public in addition to high-profile footballers.
Are footballers not allowed to take a girl out without it appearing straight in the newspaper? What is so bad about the fact that he wanted to take her to a normal chain restaurant?
Just because he is extravagantly paid, why should that mean that he has to live a lavish lifestyle? Having weathered the early storm of ridicule, Januzaj now has a great deal of sympathy and a second date on the house at his favourite chicken restaurant.
Better still, he now has further public backing and numerous style tips that may come in very handy in the future.