The Argentine Football Association expressed its pride in its legendary player, Lionel Messi, and published on Twitter the picture that shows the gift of the Emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad, the Arab cloak, “The Bisht”, to the player before he was awarded the World Cup shield.
Al-Ittihad commented on Twitter: “Absolutely..you are a king,” indicating that the Arab cloak is a symbol of the prominent position comparable to kings and princes.
In the context, the British newspaper “The Guardian” considered the Qatari celebration of the Argentine player “culmination” by making him wear that black cloak.
The newspaper headline: “The World Cup in Qatar ends with the biggest final, and the coronation of Lionel Messi.”
- Advertisement -
As such, the Australian newspaper “The Sydney Morning Herald” stated that Messi “deserves exceptional treatment,” in an article to talk about the mantle he wore.
She said, “He deserves exceptional treatment, whether through his fans bowing before him or having the most powerful man in Qatar (referring to Emir Tamim) dress him in a bisht.”
And while some objected to Messi’s appearance in the Arab dress at the celebration of awarding the World Cup shield, a number of foreign media outlets introduced that Arab dress to clarify its importance and significance.
And the Indian “Times Now News” website wrote: “The bisht is a traditional Arab dress worn by men on special occasions such as weddings, graduation ceremonies, or religious ceremonies.”
The site added, “While some claimed that Qatar tried to steal Messi’s long-awaited moment to win the World Cup, Qatari officials considered this gesture as a tribute to the sports star.”
Hassan Al-Thawadi, Secretary-General of the Organizing Committee for the Qatari Championship, confirmed in remarks to BBC Sport that the presentation of the bisht “was a celebration of Messi.”
He explained that the Argentine player wore the Arab uniform when taking pictures, before taking it off later and continuing the celebrations in the uniform and colors of his national team.
Other Western media reports criticized the moment Messi wore the Arab dress, and considered it an attempt to impose a certain culture on the coronation ceremony.
Argentina was crowned World Cup champion after defeating France on penalties (4-2) in an exciting final, which ended in a positive draw with three goals for each team during the original and extra time.