Colombian singer Shakira and FC Barcelona defender Gerard Piqué are breaking up after 11 years together, they said in a joint statement Saturday.
“We regret to confirm that we are separating. For the well-being of our children, who are our highest priority, we ask that you respect their privacy,” they said in the statement. “Thank you for your understanding.
Shakira, 45, and Piqué, 35, first met shortly before the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The soccer player appeared in Shakira’s music video for “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa),” which was the tournament’s official song that year.
They went public with their relationship in 2011. The pair has two children, Sasha, 7, and Milan, 10. Though they were together for over a decade, the pair never tied the knot.
In the couple’s 60 Minutes interview in early 2020, Shakira spoke about her decision not to get married.
“To tell you the truth, marriage scares the shit out of me. I don’t want him to see me as the wife. I’d rather him see me as his girlfriend,” she said. “His lover, his girlfriend. It’s like a little forbidden fruit, you know? I wanna keep him on his toes. I want him to think that anything’s possible depending on behavior.”
In recent days, rumors of the demise of the couple’s long-term relationship had gripped Spanish media, fueled by reports that Piqué had left the family’s home in Barcelona and was living by himself in the city.
Shakira fans suspected something was up after the Colombian-born pop star released her new single, “Te Felecito.” In the lyrics, she sings, “For completing you I broke into pieces / They warned me, but I did not pay attention / I realized that yours is false / It was the drop that overflowed the glass / Do not tell me you’re sorry, that seems sincere, but I know you well and I know you lie.”