Barcelona defender Pique splits from long-time partner Shakira

Colombian singer Shakira and FC Barcelona's soccer player Gerard Pique pose during a photocall presenting her new album "Shakira" in Barcelona

Barcelona defender Gerard Pique and pop music star Shakira have announced their split.

The couple lived together for 11 years and had two children, aged nine and seven.

Amid recent speculation of growing tensions, a statement released by Shakira’s social media center on Saturday confirmed that the couple had split up.

“We regret that we broke up,” Shakira said in a statement.

“For the welfare of our children, which are our top priorities, please respect their privacy. Thank you for your understanding.”

Pique met Shakira in 2011 when she appeared in her single song ‘Waka Waka’, the official song of the 2010 World Cup, a central defender who continued to win with Spain.

He has spent the past 14 years with Barcelona and has played more than 600 games for the team, 40 of which are coming in the 2021-22 campaign.

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