Argentina World Cup celebration parade: Millions in the Buenos Aires streets as Lionel Messi and Albiceleste evacuated by helicopter at 2022 FIFA title celebration
Argentina has shut down on Tuesday as the nation celebrates Lionel Messi and the men’s national team in their return from Qatar 2022, where they won the country’s third World Cup title and first since 1986.
With the squad in an open-top bus in the cooking summer sun of Buenos Aires, estimates have 4-5 million fans who took over the streets. It was declared a national holiday in Argentina which is why so many people were able to take to the streets.
We saw some crazy scenes of fans taking over highways, fans climbing on structures, vandalism, and even a few people who tried to jump onto the team bus. But we also saw some beautiful scenes as well: a marriage proposal, a game of keepy-uppie, and a whole lot of singing. Either way, it will go down as one of the great demonstrations of love by an entire country for a single team — many called it the largest demonstration of any kind in Argentina’s history.
The Sporting News is covering the event and sharing highlights and the best moments as they happen further below (scroll down). First, here are three live streams by Argentine outlets Telefe, TNT Sports, and La Nacion.
Telefe live stream:
TNT Sports Argentina live stream:
La Nacion live stream:
Argentina World Cup celebration parade live coverage
2:53 p.m. ET: People are finally beginning to disperse in downtown Buenos Aires as the celebration comes to a close. One of the most remarkable mass celebrations in modern history comes to a merciful end.
2:41 p.m. ET: While the scene is euphoric, many individuals have put themselves directly in harms way celebrating amidst the mayhem. There are many reports of dangerous situations, which is one of the reasons the parade has been cut short and the players were evacuated by helicopter.
It seems the individual jumping onto the bus with the players was the tipping point for the celebration, and the players were withdrawn shortly after.
Andres Cantor’s son Nico, who creates football content for CBS Sports, stated on Twitter that he’s seen many videos of the celebration that are not suitable for social media, which is an alarming report.
2:39 p.m. ET: As the players take to the skies, they are sharing images of themselves in the helicopter, preparing for the flyby of the Obelisco and final trip to the team headquarters.
2:22 p.m. ET: Here’s a snapshot (courtesy of Paulo Dybala) of the view of the fans from inside the player bus. It was wild.
2:12 p.m. ET: Before they go back to headquarters the players are actually going to fly over the mass of fans around the area of the Obelisco. They couldn’t get there by car, so they’ll do it by air.
1:58 p.m. ET: Here’s official confirmation from the president of the Argentina federation that security will not allow the players to keep going by bus to the Obelisco to salute the fans there.
1:55 p.m. ET: Papu Gomez making it rain on the bus route.
1:52 p.m. ET: There were a couple of fans who tried to jump onto the team bus from the overpass. One of them missed the target.
The players were warning the guy not to jump. Security was right on top of the guy who did land on the bus.
1:48 p.m. ET: Reports are that the players are soon to be picked up by helicopter and shuttled back to the Argentina federation headquarters. Three helicopters are going to be used for this operation.
There was no chance they were going to make it through this to the Obelisco:
1:44 p.m. ET: Spotted on the parade route.
1:35 p.m. ET: Can anyone tell if that’s a real Mbappe baby doll in Dibu Martinez’s arms?
1:30 p.m. ET: Rodrigo De Paul is getting carried away standing on top of the bus and you know who tells him to get down? Leo.
1:22 p.m. ET: Part of you has to feel for the bus driver. This bus is doing the impossible by wedging itself through all these people.
As ESPN points out, you look into the distance and all you see is more and more people.
1:18 p.m. ET: It’s been a great day, but a long one. And the shirt has also come off head coach Lionel Scaloni.
1:10 p.m. ET: Enzo Fernandez couldn’t resist the mic. “Dale, campeon!”
1:03 p.m. ET: Of course, the ray of sun shining right down on Lionel Messi and the trophy.
12:58 p.m. ET: We saw the tires stolen from multiple cars earlier in this blog. Here’s someone taking advantage of the festivities to rob a motorcycle shop. Until he draws a bit too much attention to himself. Failed operation.
12:52 p.m. ET: Per TyC Sports, the estimate on the fans in the streets has gone from four million to five million.
12:50 p.m. ET: It’s been a while, but we have a player bus sighting. It’s closing in on four hours on that thing for the players.
12:46 p.m. ET: We know you were probably wondering: Where’s Dibu?
12:44 p.m. ET: This fan will never forget his day at the top of the Obelisco in the largest ever mobilization and public demonstration in the history of Argentina.
12:37 p.m. ET: Seen on the streets during the celebrations. The El Meneaito dance and, of course, a keepy-uppie challenge. Hey, you’ve got to entertain yourself somehow if you’re waiting for that player bus that might not ever pass.
12:13 p.m. ET: Another street renaming. This one for Argentina star Enzo Fernandez, who won Young Player of the Tournament at the World Cup.
12:10 p.m. ET: The accidents keep piling up. We’ve already had two in this live blog. Here’s the latest. Again, a result of climbing up things. An urge that some have at these mass gatherings.
12:04 p.m. ET: Can’t help but feel sorry for whomever decided to drive to the parade today:
12:01 p.m. ET: So did people actually break into the Obelisco? Is that how they ended up at the top of it?
11:59 a.m. ET: Tee shirt toss from the top of the open-air player bus.
11:54 a.m. ET: Another incident involving people climbing on structures that are not meant to have people on top of them.
11:51 a.m. ET: According to estimates shared by TyC Sports there are four million Argentines in the streets of Buenos Aires. BolaVip points out that’s nearly nine percent of the entire population OF THE COUNTRY.
Meanwhile, some places are saying number is at five million:
11:32 a.m. ET: Hope this guy’s alright. Be careful out there, people.
11:25 a.m. ET: These fans are great. A supporter in a wheelchair gets hoisted above the sea of humanity.
11:20 a.m. ET: We showed you a photo before, but here’s video of those people at the top of the Obelisco. Best view in the house. Though not sure they’ll be able to figure out who’s who on the bus.
11:12 a.m. ET: What’s happening on the highways is crazy. The team’s open-top bus has already been re-routed and it could happen again.
10:59 a.m. ET: Ok. Fans on Christmas trees, fans on top of the Obelisco, and now fans on highway signs. Completely normal behavior.
10:49 a.m. ET: He proposed … at the parade. And she said yes? She said yes.
10:47 a.m. ET: This was apparently a highway.
10:43 a.m. ET: This fan has taken the liberty of renaming the street “Lionel Messi Avenue.”
10:36 a.m. ET: According to Diario Ole, these fans left their cars to go cheer the team as it left Ezeiza only to return and see they were missing one or more tires. Yep. they were stolen.
10:32 a.m. ET: Fans chasing the Argentina bus which is on the highway on its way to where the crowds are.
10:28 a.m. ET: This reporter from TNT Sports shares the exact route with a return to the federation headquarters.
10:21 a.m. ET: From people on Christmas trees to two fans sticking out of the top of the Obelisco.
10:13 a.m. ET: Messi’s enjoying every swig of this one. The “cafe con leche” reference is tongue in cheek in case you didn’t guess.
10:09 a.m. ET: People hanging from Christmas trees just to get a glimpse.
9:58 a.m. ET: Here’s the view from above as the bus makes its way through the streets of Buenos Aires.
9:52 a.m. ET: The World Cup championship celebration tour in Buenos Aires is officially underway. We can’t quite make out the beverage in the hand of Leandro Paredes.
9:45 a.m. ET: It’s 11:45 a.m. local time in Buenos Aires and the party on the bus is already in full swing. Rodrigo De Paul leading the chorus.
9:00 a.m. ET: The team is ready to board the bus and make their way toward the Obelisco.
8:45 a.m. ET: There’s already a massive expectant crowd on hand and the team is an hour away from arriving.
8:05 a.m. ET: After plenty of speculation it’s now official that the team will not be passing by the Casa Rosada, home of the president of Argentina.
7:50 a.m. ET: The Ministry of Safety of Buenos Aires has indicated there won’t be a specific stage, stops or formal parade route, as a way to encourage fans to spread out as a massive crowd is expected to be concentrated at the Obelisco, where the team was reportedly set to arrive.
7:30 a.m. ET: Reports say that the team will be leaving federation headquarters between 10-10:30 a.m. ET and starting a celebratory tour that’s expected to last more than seven hours.
7:15 a.m. ET: Lionel Messi is finally up after what you imagine was another night with the trophy.
7:00 a.m. ET: It’ll be a historic day in Argentina with millions participating in the celebrations for the Argentina national team which will be making its way to the Obelisco in Buenos Aires in what is expected to be one of the greatest mass gatherings in the country as they celebrate the country’s third world title.
Here’s the video of their arrival in the early hours at the Buenos Aires airport:
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