A former prime minister of Italy has come under fire for enticements offered to his soccer team.
As covered by Reuters, former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi was seen on video telling a group of players on his Monza soccer team at a Christmas party earlier this week that if they beat one of the top teams in Serie A, there would be women waiting for them.
“I told the guys … now you will play Milan, Juventus. If you win against one of these top teams, I’ll bring a bus of whores into the locker room,” Berlusconi said.
Berlusconi, 86, served three different tenures as prime minister of Italy — 1994-1995, 2001-06 and 2008-11.
In 2011, Berlusconi was investigated for having sex with an underage prostitute at one of his notorious “bunga bunga” parties; he was ultimately acquitted when a judge determined that Berlusconi did not know the girl was underage.
The former prime minister is known for his bombast, and was taken aback by backlash for the remarks. On Instagram, he wrote that it was “locker room talk” and slammed his critics before wishing them a Merry Christmas.
“I honestly didn’t think, and no one could imagine, that a simple witty and clearly paradoxical ‘locker room’ joke I addressed to the football players of my Monza could provoke comments as malicious as banal and unrealistic,” Berlusconi wrote, as translated by Instagram. “I feel with these critics. Perhaps it is just their absolute lack of humor that makes them so sad and also so gratuitously evil in attacking those they consider enemies. But it’s Christmas time. So happy birthday to them too.”
Berlusconi purchased Monza in 2018; he previously owned AC Milan from 1986 through 2017.
This story originally appeared on NYPost