FC Barcelona's first-ever mixed flight ended in controversy as the men’s football team flew in business class while the women’s team sat in economy on their way to Portland, Oregon.
The first mixed tour in the history of the renowned Spanish football club was tainted by a social media uproar after users noticed that women were not given the same seating priority as the men.
The club’s vice-president Josep Vives said the difference in seating arrangement was not intentional.
“At the beginning, the women’s team was not supposed to come to the US tour — it’s a logistics problem,” he explained in a statement.
When it was decided that the female team would join the men’s team in the US, there weren’t enough business seats left for everyone, he added.
Vives emphasised that all seats in the airplane offered the same comfort and that in future flights while on tour, both teams would fly in business class.
Maria Teixidor, who’s at the head of FC Barcelona's women’s team, said that the efforts the club puts into developing women’s football should not be overlooked because her team sat in economy class.
In 2012, the Japanese female football team sat in economy class while the men's team flew in business class during a trip to Europe.