A Messi end! Memes carpet bomb Argentina stars after escaping disaster during World Cup celebration parade
Video shows Lionel Messi and four teammates being forced to duck under an overhead power cable at the last second as they drove slowly through a sea of jubilant Argentinian fans celebrating the team's victory at Qatar World Cup 2022.
In what would have been a 'Messi' end for Argentina's Qatar World Cup 2022 victory celebration, stars of the champion team, including the 35-year-old legend, narrowly avoided being knocked off the back of their open-top bus moments after returning to their country to celebrate their third success at the showpiece event.
A video of Lionel Messi and four of his colleagues, including Leandro Paredes and Angel Di Maria, driving slowly through a swarm of delighted Argentine fans reveals that they were forced to duck under an overhead power cable just in time.
The winning Argentina football team was travelling through Buenos Aires on an open-top bus as the crowds lined the streets in the dead of night to try to catch a glimpse of them.
Rodrigo de Paul, an Atletico Madrid midfielder, was seen detecting the line just in time to warn his colleagues to dive to the ground in the video of the close call with the cable.
In order to prevent being thrown off the open-top bus by the cable, the five teammates ducked low.
Leandro Paredes had to move fast to dodge the cable while seated on the edge of the bus' top deck, but he kept his equilibrium. He quickly dove to the ground, but when the cable struck the top of his head, he lost his baseball cap.
As the truck made its way past the people on either side of the highway with a police escort, Messi, who was high up in the midst of the group of five Argentinian players and was holding the World Cup, took the scare in stride. He could be seen laughing off the shock as best he could.
An Argentinian journalist commenting on the scare said, "Paredes has just lost his cap. What a moment. Be careful boys."
The players had earlier grinned widely as they stepped off the plane onto a red carpet shortly before 3 am on Tuesday in Ezeiza, a city outside of Buenos Aires.
First off the plane carrying the World Cup was Messi, who was escorted by coach Lionel Scaloni. Scaloni wrapped his arm around the captain as they passed a placard that read, "Thank you, champions."
The rock group La Mosca performed "Muchachos," a song that was composed by a fan to the tune of an earlier song by the group and became a well-liked unofficial anthem for Argentine fans at the World Cup in Qatar as they were greeted by the players.
As the newly crowned winners boarded the open-top bus and made their way to the Argentine Football Association's headquarters, some of them, including Messi, were observed humming the lyrics to "Muchachos."
Fans, many of them waving Argentine flags, mobbed the bus on a highway at a snail's speed, trying to get a look at the players while police sought to keep them at bay.
The athletes will rest for a little while at the AFA headquarters before boarding the bus to the Obelisk later on Tuesday. The Obelisk is a famous landmark in Buenos Aires and was swarmed with fans on Sunday afternoon when the squad won the nation's third World Cup and first since 1986.
Tuesday was designated as a national holiday by President Alberto Fernández so that the people may celebrate the win.
Many people kept a careful check on the aeroplane that returned the players home to celebrate the day after the Sunday victory when the streets of Argentina were transformed into huge festivities.
Nearly 200,000 people followed the flight's progress online as it neared Argentina, and news outlets broadcast the landing live.
People began showing up at the airport and in front of the AFA headquarters in the afternoon in anticipation of catching a glimpse of the team.
A large number of people were already at the Obelisk, apparently prepared to spend the night there to guarantee a prime location for Tuesday's events.
With one of the highest inflation rates in the world, a nearly four-in-ten poverty rate, and years of economic stagnation, the World Cup and the success of the Messi-led team have delivered much-needed good news to the nation.
Meanwhile, a massive meme fest exploded after Messi and Co. escaped a power cable during Argentina's victory parade.
Here's a look at the memes and jokes that carpet bombed the world champions: