Manchester United have certainly been a hot topic for the past two weeks during pre-season in Europe. The club has kickstarted Erik ten Hag’s reign with a resounding 4-0 win over Liverpool and have also snapped up critical names on the Dutchman’s transfer wish list, in Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez.
The latter’s signing was finalized as late as Saturday while the club continued its pre-season tour in Australia. Prior to the official announcement from United, Sky Sports News confirmed that the deal had been completed and also broke the news during their coverage of the Red Devils’ tour.
Senior Reporter Melissa Reddy earned the scoop on air and delivered the much-awaited confirmation of the transfer to the relief of expectant United supporters.
Reddy reported on the Martinez story live from Fed Square in Australia where United were hosting their ‘Down Under’ event to announce the club’s Away kit for the upcoming season.
However, as the former Independent journalist was briefing on the deal, football fans were left thoroughly confused by the background visuals of the live broadcast which appeared to be completely upside-down.
What appeared to be a mock-up of the United dressing room displaying the 2022/23 Home kit could be seen overturned instead and fans suspected this bizarre sight to be a technical glitch from Sky Sports.
But it was far from being a glitch and was indeed an actual part of the stage set up at Fed Square for United’s promotional event.
The key to making sense of this mismatch lies in the name of the United event in itself, ‘Down Under’, a nickname popularly used for Australia, especially by the cricketing community.
The name references the country’s geographical position in the southern hemisphere as it is quite literally the land down under.
Similarly, another play on Australia’s relative location that is a running joke on social media is that everything is upside in the country compared to the rest of the world.
United’s marketing team have spearheaded their Australian tour by titling it as ‘Down Under’ and hence, set up an upside-down dressing room at Fed Square for the presentation of the Away strips.
Moreover, even the title ‘Down Under’ could be spotted written inverted on the stage and on United’s Twitter posts online.
Sky Sports and Melissa Reddy as it turns out had no part to play in United’s Aussie-themed marketing and Reddy herself was not reporting from the ceiling as fans seemed to suggest.