Bayern Munich’s Polish international striker Robert Lewandowski has cut ties with sponsor Huawei amid claims the Chinese tech giant has been helping Russia secure their network against cyber-attacks following the invasion of Ukraine.
“We have taken the decision today to end the marketing cooperation between Robert Lewandowski and the Huawei brand,” the footballer’s agent Tomasz Zawislak said in a statement to AFP, without specifying the reason for the break.
“Therefore the implementation of all promotional services has been suspended on our part,” Zawislak added.
According to Polish media, the decision is linked to an article in the British daily Daily Mail accusing Huawei of having helped Russia secure its internet against attacks by pro-Ukrainian hackers.
The Chinese group confirmed the end of their partnership with Lewandowski in a very brief statement.
“Huawei CBG Poland regrets the end of its partnership with Robert Lewandowski. We appreciate our years of cooperation and wish him every success in the future,” Huawei said in an email to AFP.
The Polish branch of the Chinese group dismissed the newspaper reports as “fake news”.
Lewandowski has voiced his support for the people of neighbouring Ukraine following the Russian invasion, wearing an armband in the Ukrainian colours during a match.
“The world cannot accept what is happening there. I hope the whole world will support Ukraine,” said FIFA’s Best Men’s Player of 2020 and 2021.