Al-arab In UK | UK TREND : The public reacts to Messi in a besh...

1445 ربيع الأول 15 | 30 سبتمبر 2023

UK TREND : The public reacts to Messi in a besht

فريق التحرير 20 December 2022

The unforgettable FIFA World Cup final between Argentina and France is hailed as one of the ‘best finals in the history of the tournament’. A battle between superstars Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe. Stunning comeback goals. In a nerve-wracking penalty shootout, Argentina won 4-2.

Members of the public, however, became more concerned about the awarding of the trophy after the match. Lionel Messi shook hands on the stage with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim and FIFA president Gianni Infantino. Following that, the Emir presented Messi with a black besht – a traditional item of clothing worn for special occasions in the region. As a result, there was a divide across the world regarding this act. Some saw it as an honouring of Messi by the World Cup hosts, which was a fitting way to end the tournament. Others argued that his Argentina team shirt was covered, ruining the moment.


Messi in a besht celebrating the world cup

Messi in a besht


It was an iconic moment that was noted by the public, who took to Twitter to congratulate Messi and to praise the Qatari Emir’s gesture as a sign of love and respect for Messi for his outstanding performance at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, particularly during the Final.

Several Twitter users commented that Qatar was honouring Messi by giving him a ‘besht’ that had ‘historic significance to celebrate Argentina’s victory’. Similarly, in western nations, champagne is usually popped as a celebratory gesture. (

Others, however, objected to the gesture, saying it diverted attention from the Argentine team and put the spotlight on traditional Qatari clothing.

On BBC’s live broadcast of the final, former England star and presenter Gary Lineker commented, “Seems a shame in a way that they’ve covered up Messi in his Argentina shirt.”



Journalist Tariq Panja of the New York Times tweeted, “Something a little strange about Messi being dressed in Bisht, that black cloak that the emir of Qatar dressed him in before lifting the World Cup.”

The criticism of the besht sparked fury on social media, with some claiming that it was rooted in ignorance and a lack of understanding of Qatari culture.

They highlighted it as yet another illustration of the unrelenting criticism the nation has faced since being chosen to host the competition.

Fans also highlighted the 1970 World Cup, where Pelee’s victory was celebrated with a Mexican sombreros, which was seen as amusing and an excellent way to honour the local culture. However, when Qatar is honouring Messi in a similar manner by dressing him in the traditional Besht, it is viewed as unnecessary and ruining the occasion. Thus, demonstrating the hypocrisy and bias of the west toward anything the Middle East does.




Read more:

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Symbols of the Qatar World Cup adorned by Arab culture

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