Taylor Swift fans look to have decisively influenced the voting for this year’s Golden Boy Award in favour of Real Madrid midfielder Jude Bellingham, overtaking the one-time vote leader, Barcelona’s Alejandro Balde.
The online, or ‘Web’ version of the prize, awarded annually by the Italian newspaper Tuttosport, via a public vote, appeared to be a closely contested race between Balde and Bellingham. At one point, the Barcelona left-back enjoyed a 13% lead over the Englishman Bellingham, 43% to 30%. However, a Taylor Swift fan pointed out on Twitter that Balde had recently told the Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo that he “didn’t like” Swift’s music.
The post, which has been viewed nearly five million times at the time of writing, attempted to rally ‘Swifties,’ as fans of the singer are known, behind Bellingham’s cause. It worked. Currently, the total number of votes is approaching three million, with 89.4% of them now going to the Madrid player – a significant swing that occurred after the tweet gained traction. Balde’s share has plummeted to just 8.3% while Jamal Musiala of Bayern Munich trails behind in third place with just 0.7%, despite the German’s fans also trying to rally Swifties’ support.
Adam White | GSFN