Thiruvananthapuram: Football star Lionel Messi’s fans in India are still celebrating Argentina’s FIFA world cup title victory which was accomplished under Messi’s leadership at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar last year. Messi’s fan following in Kerala reached an all-new level during the state’s iconic Thrissur Pooram Festival on Sunday, April 30.
In the festival, large illuminated cut-outs of legendary footballer Messi holding the FIFA world cup were displayed atop 15 elephants lined up at the Thiruvambady side of the famous Sree Vadakkhumnathan Temple. The moment, which went viral on social media, took place during the ‘kudamattam’ ceremony, which is a change of colourful ornamental, silk umbrellas in quick succession by people on top of elephants.
One of the videos that went viral on social media was that of a clip from Mathrubhumi news, where noted Malayalam sports commentator Shaiju Damodaran was anchoring the festival events. When the cut outs of Messi were raised on top of the elephants, Shaiju recreated the words he used while commentating on Messi’s goal during the 2018 World Cup game against Nigeria.
This was held at the Thekkinkadu Maidan, where thousands cutting across religion and age, had gathered to cath a glimpse of the festival.