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Viral Photo Showing Messi’s Jersey On Display Not From Locker Room Of Saudi Arabia’s Club Al-Nassr

Authors

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

Claim: Photograph showing Lionel Messi’s Jersey displayed in Al-Nassr locker room.

Fact: The photo is from the hall of King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, taken during a meeting between former Liverpool players Jordan Henderson and Sadio Mane, and was not clicked at the Al-Nassr locker room.

A picture showing footballers Jordan Henderson and Sadio Mane, former teammates of English Premier League club Liverpool FC, hugging each other has gone viral on social media in recent days, with users claiming that the image was clicked at the locker room of Al-Nassr football club, of which Ronaldo is a player.

Those sharing the image further pointed out Lionel Messi’s Jersey framed and hung on the wall, and in the caption, wrote, ‘God is everywhere’.

Facebook user Arup Chaudhary was among the many who shared the post on August 11, 2023, writing:

ইনফ্লুয়েন্স, ইনফ্লুয়েন্স বলে যারা গলা ফাটায়। তাদের দেখানো উচিত যে আল নাসের এর ড্রেসিং রুমেও লিওনেল মেসির জার্সি দেওয়ালে ফ্রেম বন্দী আছে। ভগবান সব জায়গাই বিরাজমান
(Influence, influence, which cracks their throats. They should show that in Al-Nassr’s dressing room, Lionel Messi’s Jersey has framed on the wall there. God is everywhere.) The post can be seen here.

Many others also shared the post on twitter with similar captions.

and

Henderson and Mane In Saudi Arabia

Superstar duo, Sadio Mane and Jordan Henderson, have recently arrived in Saudi Arabia as part of the summer transfer window. Henderson’s move to Al-Ettifaq under Steven Gerrard’s management involved a significant $16.5 million transfer fee. In parallel, Sadio Mane has followed in the footsteps of Cristiano Ronaldo by joining Al-Nassr. The two players met prior to the launch of the Saudi Pro League, scheduled for the upcoming month.

Factcheck/ Verification

Newschecker began by conducting a keyword search on Google which led us to multiple reports and Twitter posts carrying the same photo.

The reports revealed that Henderson and Mane were attending the lavish ceremony launching the second edition of the Saudi Pro League (Roshn Saudi League) in Jeddah on August 7, 2023. Carrying the same image, Mirror.co.uk reported that the two players met at the sidelines of the launch party of the Saudi Pro League.

Viral Photo Showing Messi’s Jersey On Display Not From Locker Room Of Saudi Arabia's Club Al-Nassr

Similarly, Arab News reported, “Mane enjoyed a warm embrace with former Anfield teammate Jordan Henderson at the official Roshn Saudi League launch event in Jeddah, and he admits the former Liverpool skipper is just one old teammate he has a strong connection with ahead of the new season.”

Tweeting the image, Henderson’s club Al-Ettifaq also revealed on its official handle that the image was clicked at the al-Jawahra Hall in Jeddah.

The video was also shared on the official Twitter handle of the organizer of Roshn Saudi League.

Further, it must be noted that the event where Mane and Henderson met took place in Jeddah, while Al-Nassr is based in Riyadh. Therefore, the context of the photograph does not align with the claim that the football jersey belonging to Lionel Messi was hung up on the locker room of Al-Nassr.

We also learnt that jerseys of Pele, Maradona, Francisco Totti, Cristiano Ronaldo among others, have also been kept in the hall of Jeddah.

Conclusion

Newschecker’s investigation has found that the claim that Lionel Messi’s jersey was displayed at Al-Nassr’s locker room, is not true. The photograph was taken at the hall of King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah and not Al-Nassr locker room.

Result: False

Sources
Report published on Mirror.UK, dated August 8, 2023
Report published on Arab News, dated August 9, 2023
Tweet by Ettifaq Club, dated August 7, 2023
Tweet by Roshn Saudi League, dated August 7, 2023


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Authors

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

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