Gerard Pique Denies Shakira Romance Rumors

Speculation as to what caused the split between Colombian pop princess Shakira and her longtime boyfriend Antonio de la Rua heated up yesterday, with many outlets (including ours) questioning the suspicious timing of the split.

Back in August, Barcelona-based newspaper El Periodico de Catalunya spotted the football star (who currently plays for FC Barcelona) exiting the same hotel that Shakira had been shacked up in for a couple of days. Since then, the paper has reported a string of supposedly secret meetings between the two. In her blog post announcing the separation, Shakira shared that she and de la Rua split in August.

Regardless, there is no proof that the singer and the soccer star—who met on the set of the music video for the 2010 World Cup anthem, "Waka, Waka"—are anything more than friends. Pique vehemently denied the romantic speculation, telling reporters in the Barcelona airport yesterday: "We're just friends. There's nothing more to it. I don't know anything about the break-up. You lot have just told me about it. We're just friends and that's that."