Updated to include further comments from Liverpool FC and Tron.
To great fanfare across the interwebs, Tron’s CEO announced earlier today that the platform had been invited to form “a partnership” with the legendary Liverpool Football Club.
It appears, however, that Justin Sun got the wrong end of the stick.
A spokesperson at the football club initially told Decrypt: “Liverpool Football Club has confirmed that it does not have a partnership with Tron.”
Another spokesman followed up later, saying Sun had, in fact, misconstrued an informal invitation—one that had been sent out to many companies in order to “better understand” their business.
Tron spokesman Cliff Edwards, on the other hand, insisted that the letter carried more weight than the club had let on.
“There was no ask to ‘better understand’ the business,” he said. “The ask was to ‘connect and explore a partnership,’ which is exactly what Justin tweeted.”
The hoo-ha began early today when flamboyant, avocado-loving Tron CEO Justin Sun tweeted (linked here and here and here): “Thank you for the unique and innovative invitation, Liverpool!” “I am impressed and I’m looking forward to exploring this #TRON new partnership together!”
A video attached to Sun’s tweet shows Liverpool, a storied English Premier League team, welcoming Tron with what looks like one of the club’s boilerplate greeting…things. A red envelope unfolds to reveal a screen, in which Liverpool F.C. manager Jurgen Klopp says, “We are Liverpool. This means more. This means more because you are associating yourself with…a philosophy, a philosophy that says more about you than being part of any other football club in the world.”
Exactly. That gibberish provided whatever passed for details today about the “partnership” and what it entailed. Sun went on to insist the proposed “partnership” was “official,” and promised that more details would be released soon. It wouldn’t be the first time Sun has made questionable claims—earlier this year the mogul bungled an apparent Tesla giveaway when critics accused him of pre-selecting the victor. The company has also been accused of plagiarizing its white paper.
It sort of made sense though. Tron could conceivably Live stream Liverpool’s games. Or, perhaps the videogame platform might be considering football on the blockchain or even tokenized calf injuries. When we initially reached out to Liverpool F.C., however, a confused spokesperson said she was unaware of the news, and assured us it would be looked into.
“Tron !?” she repeated, bewildered such a thing could even exist.
Kraken CEO Jesse Powell offered a possible explanation, tweeting a screenshot of an email he had been sent touting a similar “partnership” with the club. But while Powell dismissed it as spam, it appears Sun decided to…spin it into a marketing stunt. Horses for courses.