By: Gyang Dakwo
Pope Francis, a soccer fan like most Argentines, was all smiles when Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham presented him with a Manchester United shirt signed by his compatriot Lisandro Martinez during a visit to the Vatican on Thursday.
The Pope received the Argentina and United defender’s glass-framed number six jersey with the message “Your holiness, with much love, Licha”, United said on their website, in a private audience with a delegation of Manchester’s religious leaders.
“I think @Pontifex particularly appreciated this gift, presented by @AndyBurnhamGM and the Lord Mayor,” tweeted British Ambassador to the Holy See Chris Trott.
Pope Francis, who was also presented with a Manchester City shirt, was given a signed Lionel Messi shirt by then French Prime Minister Jean Castex in 2021.
World Cup winner Martinez suffered a foot injury last week and will miss the rest of the season.