A statue depicting one of Argentina’s most treasured stars, Lionel Messi, was partially destroyed yesterday, with vandals leaving it without its top half.
The bronze figure, which stands on Paseo de la Gloria, was unveiled at the end of June as part of a collective celebration of some of Argentina’s most fabled sporting heroes, including tennis players Gabriela Sabatini and Guillermo Vilas, as well as five-time Formula 1 champion Juan Manuel Fangio. It’s inauguration, however, came at a somewhat awkward time for the playmaker – just after Argentina’s defeat to Chile in the centenary Copa America final, a loss which led to his brief retirement from international football.
The board of City Culture and Public Works said in a statement: “the statue, located on Tristán Achával 1100…was the victim of an act of vandalism. The city government is already working on its repair.”
This only adds insult to injury for the man from Rosario, who yesterday lost out once more to a certain ‘CR7’ in the battle for FIFA’s Men’s Player of the Year Award. Having also been on the wrong side of the Ballon d’Or last month, things can surely only get better for Leo.
As of yet there is still no information on who committed the crime.