Carney was part of the punditry team for Amazon Prime’s coverage of Leeds’ 5-0 win over West Brom last week, in which a few seconds of her analysis was picked out and tweeted by the club’s official Twitter account.
In the clip, Carney suggested Leeds got promoted to the Premier League ‘because of Covid’, and Leeds’ decision to tweet the clip in isolation received widespread condemnation.
Pundit Karen Carney has deleted her Twitter account after receiving torrents of sexist abuse
Leeds responded to Carney’s claims on Twitter in a move that has itself been criticised
In the wake of the incident, Carney received a barrage of abuse online, and the 33-year-old former England international has now quit the social media platform and deleted her account, which had 78,000 followers.
In response to the news that Carney had deactivated her profile, one user wrote: ‘Hope you’re proud @LUFC, hope leaving her open for sexist abuse against her was worth getting back at her for having an opinion.’
Elsewhere, broadcaster Max Rushden wrote: ‘Appears that Karen Carney has deleted her Twitter account. What a shame that someone has to leave a social media platform because of abuse.
‘Me saying be nice to everyone isn’t going to change this place, but please be nice to everyone.’
Women in Football hit out at Leeds for their inflammatory tweet about Carney last week
Carney won 144 caps for England – the third highest ever – and now works in the media
Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani did condemn the abuse directed at Carney by his fans in the aftermath of the incident — but he stopped short of apologising for the club’s message.
The tweet has been roundly criticised, including by the Women in Football group, who said: ‘Whether you agree with the comment or not, singling out and ridiculing an individual on an official club account is not what we’re here for. Karen Carney is a well-informed pundit. This tweet is inciteful and inappropriate. Not a good look now, or at any time.’
Leeds contacted Carney on Wednesday and invited her to their training ground to carry out a TV report before their FA Cup third-round clash with Crawley next Sunday. But the club have refused to delete their tweet, which was defended by owner Radrizzani before the Italian explained his position on Wednesday night.
Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani (above) defended their tweet by claiming Carney’s comments were ‘disrespectful’ to the club – and he too has been condemned by Women in Football
Speaking to talkSPORT host Jim White, he said: ‘I’m very sorry Karen was abused on social media. I wanted to defend my club and our players from a comment, which I felt was harsh from Karen on air. Our tweet wasn’t offensive — simply stating that we won the league by 10 points.
‘We honestly didn’t expect such a reaction and we are sorry she experienced that. I respect her as a person and a pundit and I hope she understands that we just want to defend our club, we are a family. I hope the abuse stops and we can move forward and I hope Karen will be our guest at Elland Road soon.’
In a statement, Leeds added: ‘Leeds United completely condemns any abuse received by Karen Carney on social media following last night’s Premier League game with West Bromwich Albion. Everyone at our club respects Karen greatly for all she has achieved in the game, as well as her work in the media and the charity work she undertakes.’
Megan Rapinoe has defended Karen Carney after Leeds singled out the pundit on Twitter
Meanwhile, USA legend Megan Rapinoe – consistently outspoken in her own opinions – also took to Twitter to side with Carney, writing: ‘Shame. Shame. Shame. Thicken up that skin y’all. Also don’t come for @karenjcarney she’s a national treasure.’
Leeds’ win over West Brom took Marcelo Bielsa’s side up to 11th last week, but Carney raised concerns that the Whites might not be able to maintain the high-intensity style that their manager demands towards the end of the campaign.
Leeds were second and three points clear of Sheffield United with four games to play in 2018-19, but only collected one point in their final four matches to throw away the chance of automatic promotion as the Blades went up instead.
Many – including Rio Ferdinand (above) criticised Leeds for calling out on Carney on Twitter
Bielsa’s Marseille side also finished 14 points adrift of Ligue 1 winners Paris Saint-Germain in 2014-15 having been just two points behind the French giants with eight games remaining.
‘They outrun everyone and credit to them,’ she said after the Baggies were thrashed. ‘My only concern would be, ”will they blow up at the end of the season?”
‘We saw that in the last couple of seasons and I actually think they got promoted because of Covid in terms of it gave them a bit of respite. I don’t know whether they would’ve got up if they didn’t have the break.’