Lionel Messi watched on as Emiliano Martinez held a doll with Kylian Mbappe’s face on it during Argentina’s World Cup victory homecoming parade.
Argentina goalkeeper, Martinez was pictured cradling the toy baby – complete with nappy, with Mbappe’s face stuck onto the head – on an open-top bus parade in Buenos Aires on Tuesday.
The goalkeeper had raised eyebrows when he performed a lewd gesture in the seconds after collecting the Golden Glove trophy at the World Cup final presentation on Sunday. He later claimed it was a response to French jeering.
His latest act is likely to increase tensions between Argentina and France and Messi’s presence, as a team-mate of Mbappe’s at Paris Saint-Germain, raises questions for when the pair return to club duty in the French capital next month.
Emiliano Martinez reignites Kylian Mbappe feud with baby doll taunt next to Lionel Messi – GETTY IMAGES
Mbappe, who scored a hat-trick in the final and yet still ended up losing, was the subject of another swipe from the Argentine players in the immediate aftermath of the final in Doha. They marked their win by holding a “moment’s silence” for the forward in the dressing room after the game.
Further celebrations saw a staff member dive head-first into a bin and Argentine players singing about “f—ing journalists” in the media area at the Lusail Stadium.
Martinez has become a focal point for some of the more questionable behaviour in the past 48 hours. He was hailed as a hero for his role in the shoot-out, which came after the game ended 3-3 in normal time.
The Aston Villa goalkeeper saved one penalty from Kingsley Coman and had an influential impact in a second being missed. He was pictured throwing the ball away when Aurelien Tchouameni had been expecting it to be returned to him. The France midfielder subsequently put his penalty wide.
Martinez then shocked millions of TV viewers when he held the goalkeeper trophy, a giant gold-plated hand, to his groin and waved it around on the podium. He later said he “did it because the French booed me. Pride doesn’t work with me.”
Argentina’s victory parade in their capital city would go on to be abandoned due to safety fears, with players being evacuated in helicopters.