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Even with contracts with Barcelona and Manchester United in Europe and ads featuring Kobe Bryant in the U.S., the Anatolian upstart isn't playing games as it it pushes to become a major player while other airlines stumble.

Barcelona’s football stars have reportedly requested an all-female cabin crew on their flights to overseas fixtures.

The team, which faces Spartak Moscow in their opening Champions League tie this evening, made the request to Turkish Airlines – the club’s official airline partner – after they became tired of autograph-hunting male flight attendants.

Other complaints made to the carrier included staff asking for shirts, and others attempting to discuss the finer points of the game with the Catalan club’s players.

According to Turkey’s Hurriyet Daily News, the airline has now agreed to provide a handpicked cabin crew, made up of 20 female flight attendants, for all future flights, as they are less likely to be star struck by the presence of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and David Villa on board their aircraft.

Turkish Airlines became Barcelona’s official airline in 2010, paying just over £6 million for the privilege of transporting the club’s highly paid stars around the world.

The airline – which operates services to 160 international and 41 domestic destinations – also sponsors Manchester United. The news may interest the likes of Wayne Rooney and Ryan Giggs, although there are no reports of any such request from Sir Alex Ferguson’s men.

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Tags: sports, turkish airlines

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