The 2018 Ballon d’Or awards ceremony in Paris on Monday was supposed to be a milestone in the growth of women’s soccer, particularly the professional game, by honoring the world’s best female soccer player for the first time alongside their male counterparts, like previous winners Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. But the selection of Olympique Lyonnais striker Ada Hegerberg as the award’s first female recipient was marred by host DJ Martin Solveig’s cackling offhand comment asking if the 23-year-old Norwegian would like to twerk onstage in celebration. Hegerberg answered “Non” and looked uncomfortable. Afterward, she agreed to briefly dance with Solveig to a Frank Sinatra song.
The reaction online to Solveig’s comment was just about what you’d expect.
The event’s emcee later took to Twitter to try to explain that he was joking. Solveig asked other players to dance, like Paris Saint-Germain striker Kylian Mbappe, who received an award as the top young player in the world. Mbappe and Solveig awkwardly danced to Drake onstage after the 19-year-old accepted his award.
“He came to me afterwards and was really sad that it went that way,” the Norwegian forward said. “I didn’t really consider it sexual harassment or anything in the moment. I was just happy to do the dance and win the Ballon d’Or.”
Anyway, enough of that dude. More importantly: