Using hundreds of discarded plastic bottle caps, high school students in Argentina stitched together a gigantic mural of soccer player Leonel Messi. A video of the artwork was circulated extensively on the internet.
Nearly nine months after the Argentine superstar guided the national team to the greatest award in world sport, the football-loving nation is engulfed in political rifts and a severe economic downturn, with a crucial election scheduled for later this year.
Love, however, appears to loom even bigger for Messi.
with the Grand Bourg neighborhood, which is located just outside of the city Buenos Aires, a high school courtyard is completely covered with a recently completed painting.
The message expresses gratitude to the team’s captain, who is tattooed, and features the forward, who is grinning, raising the golden World Cup trophy from the team’s victory in Qatar last year.
A teacher at the school named Sebastian Ramirez shared a short clip on social media that quickly gained popularity and summarized a common opinion on Messi’s legacy.
He said, “A tribute to the greatest.”
A video of the mural’s creation showed many kids stooped over a pattern that was color-coded, with bottles caps strewn all over the place.
Even though triple-digit inflation and the local currency’s sharp decline are the main topics of discussion in the run-up to October’s general election, Messi has proven to be a powerful uniting force in the South American nation.
The front-runner, radical libertarian Javier Milei, has stirred controversy lately with his caustic and even obscene criticism of Pope Francis, the nation’s other international symbol.
The greatest economic downturn in decades has increased the number of impoverished people and fueled their resentment of established party politics. It has also been seen to have contributed to Milei’s unexpected first-place finish in an August primary with 30% of the vote.