Napoli’s social media executive has stepped down from his role amid the ongoing saga over the club’s highly critiqued antics on TikTok.
The Serie A side sparked controversy this week when they posted videos on their TikTok account mocking striker Victor Osimhen, leading to his agent threatening to take legal action.
The first video posted showed the 24-year-old appealing for a penalty, with sped-up audio captioned ‘Gimme penalty please’ before showing him blazing the spot-kick wide of the post.
A second video from the club’s account, which has been circulated online and since deleted, compared Osimhen to a ‘coconut’ – widely viewed as a racial slur.
And now, in the wake of the saga, the club’s social media executive has left the club and confirmed the news via a post on his personal Instagram account.
Alessio Fortino wrote: ‘Today, after 805 days, my professional adventure with SSC Naples ends.
‘For many this job would be comparable to a dream, for me it was simple daily reality: a reality built on commitment and fueled by the constant desire to learn and play.
‘I cannot help but express my deepest gratitude to all the colleagues, collaborators, partners and supporters I’ve met along this long journey for making this experience so special.
‘Leaving the company with a baggage of great memories and an excitement for the new adventures that lie ahead.
‘Thanks again for everything and see you soon! Alessio’.
In response to the incident, Napoli insisted they ‘never wanted to mock’ Osimhen but stopped short of publicly apologising for the incident.
Osimhen received a private apology from Napoli directors on Wednesday for the club’s behaviour on social media, but he is upset that they did not also make a public apology, according to Il Corriere dello Sport.
The striker has deleted pictures of himself in Napoli shirts from his Instagram and refused to celebrate after scoring against both Udinese and Lecce in the past week.
Despite the TikTok videos being posted, Osimhen still made himself available for Napoli’s league clash with Udinese on Wednesday night and against Lecce on Saturday.
He started the match at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium and scored the second goal in a 4-1 win, although he refused to celebrate.
He then played again in their 4-0 away win against Lecce, where he scored their second goal of the day.