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Messi’s statue cut in half in Buenos Aires

A bronze statue of Lionel Messi has been chopped in half in a bizarre act of vandalism.

The sculpture was only unveiled in Buenos Aires in June but is now in need of urgent repair after the head, arms and torso were removed.

The statue is one of several tributes to Argentinian sports stars along Glory Street in the country’s capital.

It was erected last summer after Messi announced his decision to retire from the national side. He later opted to remain available to selectors.

As yet, police had not made any announcement about the perpetrators.

‘The statue of Lionel Messi… was victim of an act of vandalism that left the footballer’s sculpture without its top half,’ the Buenos Aires municipal government said in a statement.

‘The city government is already working on its repair.’

The vandalism took place hours before Messi missed out on FIFA’s Player of the Year Award to long-time rival, Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Barcelona wizard did not attend ‘The Best’ ceremony in Zurich, partly to avoid playing second fiddle to the Real Madrid star.

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