Kim Lim on Valencia FC fan slamming: 'I told myself, enough of getting bullied'

"The fans say they don't see much of my dad and me, but it's just that I don't post a picture every time I watch a match." said Ms Lim
PHOTO: Kim Lim

The daughter of Singaporean billionaire and Valencia owner Peter Lim is standing by her critical comments on Instagram of the Spanish La Liga club's fans.

Among other things, Miss Kim Lim said the fans "can be quite crazy and stupid" and added: "So, stop writing stupid comments because you make yourself very filthy."

The 24-year-old also stated in another post that she has "had enough" of the fans' hateful comments, so she is "giving it back" to them.

She told The New Paper in a phone interview from the UK that initially, she did not allow the racist and lewd comments to affect her, but the insulting comments about her dad and the racist attitude of some of the fans were the last straw.

She said: "I couldn't take it any more. I told myself that enough was enough, enough of getting bullied."

According to Miss Lim, it started when she was on holiday in Manchester, UK, where she was also taking a look at her father's hotel because she will be helping out in its Asian expansion.

She then posted a photo of tickets to a match between Manchester United and Arsenal, followed by a photo of her father's room number, which bore his name and her lucky number.

"I saw it and sent a photo of it to my dad. I felt very touched as that number meant something to me - it is the day I was born," she said.

"He told me that he loves me a lot, so I posted it as gratitude to him."

But things turned ugly.

BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION

"I knew that if I posted that picture, something would happen, which was why I said that I'd be heading to Valencia after the match," she said.

"I didn't know that things would be blown out of proportion.

"Before my dad bought Valencia, I was already a fan of Man U. But it doesn't mean that if I support Man U, I don't support Valencia."

Comments from fans started pouring in and their reactions were extreme, accusing Miss Lim of not respecting Valencia CF and that her father was not wanted in Valencia.

It got to a point where the comments had racial slurs in Spanish, telling Miss Lim and her family to "go home". Some even hurled profanities at her.

"I understand a bit of Spanish and most of the comments came from men. Why would they swear at a lady like that?" said Miss Lim, adding that she was still calm when she saw the comments but lost her cool when fans started insulting her dad.

"They were cyberbullying and the profanities they said were ridiculous.

"I have to stand up for my family and I want to protect my dad, who loves me so much.

"I'm also not just standing up for myself, but for Asians as a whole."

Her managers tried to calm her down and her friends helped her tone down the draft for her post, which was harsh.

Mr Lim was also recently jeered during a Valencia match.

Miss Lim said fans do not understand the amount of work that her family puts in.

She said: "We love the club a lot. We stand up together, and we go together as we support each other.

"The fans say they don't see much of my dad and me, but it's just that I don't post a picture every time I watch a match.

"If time permits, I would even take a flight from Singapore to Valencia just to support (the team) and then head back."

Miss Lim said it's very difficult to appease fans, so she took a stand against the racism and cyberbullying.

When TNP asked her about her safety, she said: "Some fans said they would hunt me down but I am not scared as I think it's silly.

"If it happens, it happens. But in the end, it's they who will be punished.

"Right now, I am still angry, but I am too tired to think about it any more and I'm sure everyone can see for themselves."

Cheers turn to jeers for S'pore billionaire

Singapore tycoon Peter Lim made headlines two years ago when he bought Spanish La Liga football club Valencia for $609 million.

Fans of the cash-strapped club, which has the third most supporters in Spain behind heavyweights Real Madrid and Barcelona, initially viewed Mr Lim as their "knight in shining armour".

They had hopes that the billionaire investor would transform their team into one of the best in La Liga, as it used to be, and they would eventually go back to playing in the Champions League.

Mr Lim, 63, who has an estimated net worth of $2.4 billion, was ranked 11th on a Forbes list of the 50 richest people in Singapore this year.

His daughter, Kim, was also popular with the fans and was once hailed as Valencia's "angel" after the team beat Real Madrid's 22-game winning streak in a match in January last year.

The 24-year-old socialite, who is close to Seungri of K-pop boy group Big Bang fame, also once arranged for the band's hit Fantastic Baby to be played at that match.

But as the club slipped in its ranking this year, the Spanish media and Valencia fans started to question Mr Lim's commitment as he is rarely seen at the club's matches.

For the first time, Mr Lim was booed at Sunday's match when they drew against last-ranking Granada.

Valencia currently rank 16th of 20 teams in La Liga.

Read also: Online spat between Valencia football fans and club owner's daughter Kim Lim​

Kim Lim: Tycoon Peter Lim's daughter and jet-setting princess​

shiyunc@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on Nov 24, 2016.
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